Poems from the Second Attention

The poems in the Blog stream derive from text fragments that I found while reading a newspaper article—typically the Wall St. Journal or New York Times.

However, I select a text fragment while in another mood or state of mind…that starts with what I call vertical time—a space of no past, no future…nothing but an expansive limitless Now that scales vertically. Huh?

Let’s just say that I really enjoy being in this state of Flow and have begun to systematically map all the paths and secret passages into this wondrous realm.

As I scan a well-written article, one chock full of rich propositions and vivid prose, I identify a short phrase that rings an inner bell, resonating in some distinct but indefinable way: “Here I am, take me home.”

Seated in less trafficked areas at Café Trieste or Zoe Café, both in my hometown of Oakland California, I merely underline the text fragments and take them back home to transcribe.

Once a slapdash affair, and now a focused practice, I vocally transcribe the underscored passages into a Google Docs document, using Dragon Dictate.

Speaking each phrase aloud, swirling it in my mouth as a fine wine, I connect again with the original impulse of its selection—a funny turn of phrase—that suggests that the phrase picked me, and not the other way around.

Each phrase seems to fall into the right place on the page; natural groupings simply appear. My work is done.

I use the term Second Attention to bring forth the experience, not just the idea, of a separate, autonomous reality that remains enmeshed and interwoven in our direct experience of the material world.

Recent advances in neural computational imagining now suggest that we not only dream during the night; we dream all day long. And that the more intense physical sensory-inputs of waking experiences overwhelm our inner always-dreaming senses…perhaps just as the stars, obscured by sunlight, disappear beyond the lovely veil of blue skies, yet remained fixed in the firmament.

And this is my point: Listening with our always-dreaming ears brings us into secret worlds and wonders to-be-experienced but rarely explained.

Consider this small gift my personal invitation to join me in a conversation, over There/Now, in the Second Attention.

Social Share Toolbar