Recent Poetry by Teacher Joseph Goldstein

Recent Poetry by Teacher Joseph Goldstein

A reflection on practice by Joseph Goldstein

    The Muse

Something happened

In my seventy-fifth year-

a channel opened

to oceans of space,

where words sparkle

in their sparse delight

calling, calling, calling


Lazy Day at 76

Morning coffee

and a first glimpse

into the unknown day,

waiting for that pulse of life

to push through the pale joy

of sitting,

and doing nothing.


Going for a walk

is almost too much

on this day of questionable ease:

is it simply resting up

to save the world

or the faint glimmer of decline?

I’ll decide tomorrow

if I awaken in the morning light.


         A Fall

A high forest stream,

a slip, a fall, a twisted knee

and summer plans asunder.

Why, because

anything can happen any time.


A night awake


and in the morning


Why, because

anything can happen any time

opens the heart

to life

to death.



The birth canal of death

propels us forward.

Is it love that beckons

or the grappling hook of hope –

pulling, pulling

towards the first crying breath?



Some knots defy the fingers

struggling to unwind

our complex threads of history –

our minds, like arthritic hands

fumbling in the dark.

Maybe those threads

can never be picked apart

and only the brilliant edge of love

will find the way.









Dandelions –

bursts of joy

littering my yard.


Seduction –

easing into a warm bath,

already cooling.


Two long legs

Looking down, I wonder

‘Who do they belong to?’


 Ode to Non-being

If now, on top of this, Nonbeing IS, who can comprehend it.

  • Chuang Tzu


What if the Matrix

Is Being-ness itself –


Building dreams at water’s edge,

ageing children dig in the sand.

Shovels and spades build castles and caves,

as Shiva plays on breaking waves.


Who will brave the embrace of peace –

that mysterious absence

terrifying at first,

and then release.



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