Friday, May 28, 2010

a forest full of poets...a room full of holy

in the words of my students...

long time no see, nature
it passed long time to feel you
but you're always same
- hanna

day like this fine one
i wish i could have guitar
then i sing for you
- song

at silent forest
breeze blowing, trees whispering
small flower seems shy
- yae jin

nature give many
humans snatch things from nature
soon end relationship
-ye young

greatness of nature
it makes my mind flow freely
hugging my sorrow
-bo wae

no one knows my heart
the sun burning with my love
only breeze knows that
- ga young

go back to the woods
where many birds are singing
without shoes, with me
- ji young

the fickle weather
please find your own character
in every season
-sae rok

flowers are shaking
butterflies flying around
my heart is throbbing
- ga young

a few days ago, my students and i set out into the woods for the footsteps of the great nature mystics. we found a secluded grove on campus and in silence each settled into a place of our own. i sat on a bench under a big shade tree guarding a mountain of the gals' handbags. they looked so much lighter and carefree without those giant purses strapped over their shoulders. i spent most of the hour studying my students who were sitting nearby...finding great delight in how peaceful and relaxed they seemed...their eyes gazing quietly off into the canopy of green...heads turning at the echoing cry of a magpie...soft smiles on their faces...hands reaching out to graze the dandelion fuzz floating by on the breeze...pens occasionally jotting the language of poetry in their spiral bound notebooks.

students so peaceful
their faces glowing sunshine
heart door flung open

we have shared very intimate time together this semester. the kind where sometimes i am left breathless with amazement at what is organically unfolding in a moment. recently, we began class by sitting in a circle in the darkened lecture hall with a burning candle at the center. i played lisa gerrard's haunting piece, "i asked for love." as they gently set their eyes upon the flickering firelight and the music filled the space, i walked around the inside of the circle and dabbed a bit of frankincense essential oil on each of their wrists, as a way to create a wider sensory ground them and clear their create a deeper sense of sacred space. when the music ended, we remained in candlelit darkness and each person spoke one word to express his or her feeling in that moment:















the students then moved directly into "free writing" (stream of consciousness) for five minutes. one of my students wanted to share her writing with me after class that day. usually i do not read the students' free writing work because i don't want them to write with an audience in mind; i want them to write solely for allow uncensored material to surface. however, she insisted i read, as the experience in the circle had moved her deeply:

I feel I sit in church. Actually, I don't believe in the God. But at that moment, if I pray to the God, the God listens to my prayer. It's so comfortable, so relaxed...

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