Dokkodo–The Way to Go Forth Alone

Poetry

(from upcoming volumes of my Dokkodo-inspired poetry)

She steps forward
understanding that she must
go on this path alone,
utilizing resources as they come.

He did it before.
Alone.
He walked along carrying
grocery bags full of corn,
beans, cheese, and the occasional
avocado in hand.
A treat, he would say, for
working that extra hour
at Dearden’s last week.

She violates the privacy
of his path. A 20 year old
tired of waiting for the MTA
to mope along their path.
A chance encounter.
He dropped his tortillas at her feet.
Bendita niña.

She watches him kneel with no ease.
A tattoo on her calf that reminds him of
his grandmother’ story about love.
Grandma had one story about love.
But she, she tattooed, she
steps back, uneased.

Señor, do you need
a hand with those groceries?

He smiles and says, Sí.

She steps forward
understanding that she must
go on this path alone,
utilizing resources as they come.

She takes a chemistry book
out of her book bag.
Inserts tortillas, fresh and fragrant.
Holds broccoli, cauliflower and rice bags.
He purchased no meat, she notes.
He notes the bus is not there.

This poem is part of my current, 3-volume poetry and photography chapbook project, which includes “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze.

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7. Never be jealous

Poetry

(from Dokkodo, Volume 1; The Way of Walking Alone)

Aún no falta
mucho para que el celo
sea el cielo.

Falta mucho, aún
para que el cielo
sea el celo.

Mucho falta para
que el celo
no sea el cielo.

No falta mucho
para que el celo
aun sea el cielo.

Faltas mucho, cielo
para no ser
el celo.

Celo faltas, aún
para ser mi cielo.

This poem is part of my last poetry and photography chapbook, “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze.

6. Do not regret what you have done.

Poetry

(from Dokkodo, Volume 1; The Way of Walking Alone)

Pop saw lights
in the corner of the ceiling
the day
we made the decision
to take him
off life
support.

His final heart
beat was at
11:14pm.
74 years, 335 days
after his first.

It was Mami Lucy’s birthday.
The lights appeared
at 1:49pm

earlier that day.

9 months later
Tia Luisa walked
towards
Tri-City Dialysis Center,
5 minutes after
dropping off
Mami Lucy.

She waited at the bench
next to the sliding
doors.
Tia Luisa imagined
Mami Lucy as a little girl.

Paramedics took 9 minutes
to receive the call,
drive one block,
reach the dialysis center,
park.

Mami Lucy was declared brain damaged
2 hours later,
oxygen not reaching her brain
3 minutes too long
after her heart stopped
mid-dialysis.

All our family was there
in the first hour of learning
Mami Lucy was in the hospital.
At 5:39pm
we witnessed her final breath.

Small birds are known to die within weeks
when they lose their mate.
Especially Love Birds.

Their song stops.
Another’s response is not
enough.

It’s the short moments
of silence that kills
them.

It’s the missing fights,
the vanished companionship
in the dark,
the absent caricia.

We live on.

We live on.

Trying not to remember that you’re gone
too often.
The regret that we can’t share our lives with you
anymore
is easier to avoid.

This poem is part of my last poetry and photography chapbook, “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze.

5. Be detached from desire your whole life.

Love Poetry, Poetry

(from Dokkodo, Volume 1; The Way of Walking Alone)

Como si existiera una neblina
ante los ojos.

El no saber.

No saborear.

No poner mi lengua
en los pelos
finos de tus senos.

Jamás cargar un hueco
en mi diente
para rellenarlo con tu sabor
de piña y coco.
El azúcar café,
café y azúcar.
Remedio natural.

Niña perdida.
No tu. Yo.
Ni tuyo.

Jamás vivirás
con deseo en tu vida.
La vida entera.

Es importante vivir
sin deseo, ascético
en tus maneras,
tus manías.

This poem is part of my last poetry and photography chapbook, “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze.

4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.

Poetry

(from Dokkodo, Volume 1; The Way of Walking Alone)

It was over a pair of carne asada tacos
sizzle of the beef still fresh
¡sás!
se las tumbaron
cilantro floated so heavenly. Towards
the floor.

Isaac stood there, motionless
Ang Lee film interpretation
a ninja would’ve crouched down and
hidden a dragon.

Guacamole has a way
of staying together in any circumstance
unlike family.

It was over
a pair of carne asada tacos.

Rolo didn’t mean to, but sort of did.
His arm slipped, a gentle hard slip
like brothers do all the time.
All
the time.

Isaac had a choice to make.
Empty styrofoam taco tray in one hand
agua de tamarindo in the other.

Isaac had a choice to make.

His choice was clear.
Smear.
Smear that guacamole covered corner
tray on Rolo’s hair.

This poem is part of my last poetry and photography chapbook, “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze.

3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.

Poetry

(from Dokkodo, Volume 1; The Way of Walking Alone)

a partial hand
4 fingers, no thumb

pinky
thumb
nothing between

tortillas, no cheese
or avocado

savor the maíz on its own

a lover and a mistress

no place to call home

don’t depend on a partial feeling

don’t depend
on it alone

a smile, no sparkle
her eyes. a tap on the arm
no kiss

don’t depend on a partial feeling

I need proof
I seek proof
a reason is
all I need

driving
half way there
half-way-home

benefits don’t
outweigh negatives

stalemate
inability to move forward
in-action
un-action

the Hamlet of life

This poem is part of my last poetry and photography chapbook, “Dokkodo; Volume 1—The Way of Walking Alone” available online at http://mkt.com/smiley-faze. Note: this poem does not appear in this way in the actual book. I took a more typographic approach for the book; here it is presented in a more linear format.