Letting Go
by Doug Bolling

Rather the flight of the bird passing and leaving no trace. . . .
–The Keeper of Sheep XLIII, Fernando Pessoa

Sudden a winging in of sea gulls
Out of the blue early evening clouds.

They land on the beach, peck among
The sea spawned wrack as sun and shadow
Weave their stories of this hour brief,
Subject to sea’s roil and music roughened
By a moon’s long distance wooing.

I have come here to heal and begin
Again, whatever selfhood of me
Left after so much loss and words
That were aimed and found
Their target.

To disappear from yourself is the
Gateway to wisdom the Zen master
Had whispered on that long ago
Mountain top in its largesse
Of snow.

Now the gulls are lofting toward
deep sky, their erudite wings
brilliant in the billowing air.

The tide drifts out and I
With it, mind numbed
In such silence, this
Vastness, this
Beautiful nothingness.



About the Poet:  Doug Bolling lives in the greater Chicago area after teaching At academic institutions in his native Kentucky and the midwest.  He has Been published in many reviews including Posit, The Aurorean, Albatross, Earthshine, Illya’s Honey, The Missing Slate (with interview), and Birmingham Arts Journal among others. His poetry has received Best of The Net and Pushcart nominations and several awards, most recently the Mathiasen Award for his poem “Body and Soul” published by the University of Arizona’s Harmony Magazine.