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Christopher Luna performs with Tyler Burba by Nathan Tompkins

Christopher Luna performs with Tyler Burba by Nathan Tompkins

Friday, July 27, 2018

Saying Goodbye to Two Beloved Naropa Teachers: Poems for Bobbie Louise Hawkins and Bill Scheffel

Bobbie Louise Hawkins with Jackson Mac Low, Jim Carroll, Peter Lamborn Wilson, and Steven Taylor in the tent at the 1999 Summer Writing Program, Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, Boulder, CO

A Few Words of Encouragement from a Retired Muse
With Love and Respect for Bobbie Louise Hawkins

your hand on my shoulder
your gaze of steel
and your love emanating
in the form of a growl of command
as you let me know
that you think I ought to keep it up

a quick moment
you’d soon forget
an act of generosity
powerful enough
to sustain me
for going-on two decades

thank you for the permission
to tell family secrets
to eschew starfucking
& to proceed without fear

            never explain
            never apologize

            make friends with the microphone

even the fiercest of protectors
must eventually leave us
            if all goes well to
be transformed into

guiding spirits

angels of reassurance
reminders of our impermanence
our damnably reliable
temporariness


Resurrection Ritual for Bill Scheffel
based on notes from his Shambala Meditation Practicum
Naropa Institute, Fall 1997

I wouldn’t say that I understand the environment;
I simply experience it. John Cage

are you on time?
what is your experience of time?
do you feel you have enough time?

can you listen to someone
without simultaneously critiquing
what they’ve said?

how much are we tasting all of our experience?
how much do you consider the beauty in your life?

does the universe have an opinion?
is there consciousness before opinion?
before opinions is the cosmic mirror

nowness is intuitive intelligence
something intelligent that just witnesses

This is perfect (perfected, complete, flawless).
Expression of a man I admire.

we carry the burden
of survival
we are under duress
we need to undo this numbness
we are dominated by narration
we internalize metaphors, and they can become very powerful
we can hold on to a particular thought for our entire lives
            this thought may not be true

the drala has been dispelled by the modern industrial world
barrage of competing thoughts like gunfire
patchwork of masks which form a cocoon

we don’t want to deal with the intensity of the moment
emotions are energy, not a story
what we see is largely memory

get over your mythology
reverse the process, flip figure & ground
notch, catalogue, pivot
change allegiance from thought to intuition
return to awareness
become where you are
look at what is

when you notice an intensity
become a block of wood (this is a metaphor)
                                   
(this creates space)

vastness in the moment

experience has a duration

beneath fear is tenderness
the warrior cultivates both fearlessness & gentleness
faith, creativity, joy, nature, trust

curiosity is high intelligence
awareness is my home

It’s a lofty goal, but I’m not a bodhistattva

                        I’m right here

I have already survived
 
What did you learn from Bobbie Louise Hawkins?
A Call for Submissions

Kona Morris has been working on creating a craft book with Bobbie, tentatively entitled Bobbie On Writing. Kona and Bobbie’s daughter, Sarah Creeley, have decided that in addition to the pages compiling Bobbie’s remarkable insight on the art, craft, and process of writing, they will also include a section in the book from people whom Bobbie inspired.

We are asking anyone who ever internalized something from Bobbie’s exceptional wisdom—about the craft of writing and performance, but also about life and anything else—to submit a piece for the book.

These essays (or whatever form they take) will serve as a sort of collective Afterward, a compilation of testimonies, for all those people who were never fortunate enough to learn straight from the source, and for those who have yet to discover the extraordinary gift that the literary world had in Bobbie Louise Hawkins.

Please share this with anyone who knew Bobbie, and email all submissions to the following email address by December 31st, 2018: BobbieOnWriting@gmail.com