Letters from Annie are always delightful, thought provoking free form stream of consciousness poetry, excerpts of which I share here with permission.

Date: Fri, 11 Jul 1997 09:39:09 -0400

   		    Meeting with Power
   A year ago, another large copperhead snake appeared at our
   doorstep.  Unafraid and quiet (s)he stayed long enough for 
   cats to become at ease with her presence.  The dark mottled
   skin blended perfectly with the leaves in the shadow of the
   As I stepped to open the door, intentional movement warned me
   of this confident and by now maybe curious being.  The copperhead
   has poisonous enough venom to incapacitate most any adversary;
   no reason to fear. 
   (S)he has shown herself and initiated contact.  Other years my
   first reaction was to recoil from danger, at least inwardly, and
   then move directly to Kill ! mode.  Now the surprise element was 
   mitigated by having met copperheads on the doorstep for at least
   the previous 4 years.
   One year we decided not to kill the door copperhead and she moved
   into the greenhouse.  I tried to make her leave by slamming the door,
   setting up hostile vibrations.  I slammed the door until the doorjam
   came loose.  The snake appeared unaffected.  She exuded quiet
   power evinced by fearlessness which I found intimidating.  Walking
   by her the hair on the back of my neck straightened and I became
   alert as a warrior.  The snake never made a threatening move coiled
   next to the walkway, but I became convinced she would lay eggs in 
   the cinderblock cavities under the seedling table.  
   I asked John to kill her and he did, swiftly, effortlessly.
   In such a death I see no pain.  I have never been able to
   kill anything more evolved than an insect with such detachment.
   The copperhead of last July somehow made intimate contact with me.
   The snake asserted its right to the place (big stone door step which
   we had dragged by a chain with the truck half a mile and levered into
   place in front of the vestible opening to the east). I knew this was
   not the place for the copperhead; children would visit occassionally.
   Slowly a resolve coalesced.  I would speak to it with an ultimatum:
   leave by tomorrow or be killed (by the best of my ability).  The
   latter course was chosen.  I chose a weapon suited to the deep recess
   between stone and foundation wall:  a long handled bushwacher.
   I stood before the copperhead calming the mind and opening to whatever
   might be best.  Minutes passed.  Unusual for impulsive me.
   The snake must know I now had a weapon.  It was alert but passive.
   Tension and calm together.  After reevaluating the situation and being
   sure I needed to kill the snake, I struck.  One blow severed the head
   about a foot from the mouth. Both ends convulsed.  I turned away and
   gathered sage to rub my hands.  Sage feels cleansing.  It is something
   to do rather than watch death.
   I knew it had been wrong on some level to kill a nonaggressive creature.
   Better I teach the children to be alert and mindful and responsible.
   Other years, I had flung the dead snake bodies into the underbrush,
   with an idea of providing a meal for a raccoon, oppossum, whomever.
   Now I saw that a burial was in order, at least for the head.
   With some ceremony, it was done, at sundown.
   I felt full of the power from the copperhead...touching all aspects
   of experience and learning.  
   power and the abdication of power
   further possibilities
   and just passing through

Date: Thu, 17 Jul 1997 14:14:12 -0400

		you meet morning in the dark of night
		and call it good; how wonderful.

Date: Fri, 1 Aug 1997 21:30:43 -0400

	Sanity...balance and strength (equinimity and courage)
		       freedom and relationship
		patience and earnestness; awareness, clarity, wonder
		immersed in natural elements it's easy; the graduate course
			is carrying it over to (sub)urbia's, noise and pressure
		recognition of love, beauty and value
		communion and communication

	This conversation is valued and the source/recognition of joy in 
	consideration and sharing.

	The boddhisatva's vow or
	Great Vows for All, chanted by
	Rinsai Buddhists going into every meal

		Shu jo mu hen sei gan do
		Bo no mu hen sei gan dan
		Ho mon mu ryo sei gan gaku
		Butsu do mu jo sei gan jo. 

	the thing i like about typetalking with you is 
	i like the self to whom you relate
	you bring out the best in me
	which can be said for maybe
	a handful of people I know/haveknown

	now with the breeze tickling the leaves
	the pileated woodpecker drilling
	cicadas dronning
	sun still warm
	its outside with me

Date: Fri, 12 Sep 1997 17:47:57 -0400

	The Silence

		Though the air is full of singing
		my head is loud
		with the labor of words.

		Though the season is rich
		with fruit, my tongue
		hungers for the sweet of speech.

		Though the beech is golden
		I cannot stand beside it
		mute, but must say

		"It is golden," while the leaves
		stir and fall with a sound
		that is not a name.

		It is in the silence
		that my hope is, and my aim.
		A song whose lines

		I cannot make or sing
		sounds men's silence
		like a root.  Let me say

		and not mourn: the world
		lives in the death of speech
		and sings there.

			Wendell Berry

Date: Fri, 3 Oct 1997 10:37:10 -0400

   Now it's out into the sunshine with me and up to look at the spring
   sending water to the resevoir, to collect any apples fallen in the night,
   to see what there is to see which will lead to something to do, playing
   in the woods gathering leaves for mulching the garden probably.

   Love, contentment and inventiveness

Date: Sun, 5 Oct 1997 20:30:35 -0400

   Dreaming, dipping into the unconscious,
   bringing/receiving learning from the collective pool?
   Some dreams are abstract concepts without visuals or sound
   some vivid and revealing, even lifechanging; most, disjoint trivia.
   Most don't survive the hypogogic review to make it to the telling,
   but J and I usually speak of dreams on awakening.

   > Patience for me is sometimes merely a redirection, a ceasation of
   > beating my head against a wall, learning to be a little more
   > clever - perhaps just walking around the wall.  Inventiveness is
   > almost always more efficacious than brute force.
   > "... bend, like the willow in the wind ..."
   so true and so natural and yet 
   genius is required to remember this in our conditioning...
   patience begeting inventiveness seems at first wonderful insight
   then on reflection betrays continuation of purpose rather than
   acceptance or openness to what is

Date: Sun, 19 Oct 1997 17:35:51 -0400

   As I type, fruit flies pester the computer and I clap at them,
   now bagging about one of three tries (not counting the first 20 or so 
   swats to get the range).  We do that which life
   puts before us.  Assumptions exposed leave room for learning;
   learning begets learning.  

Date: Mon, 3 Nov 1997 11:48:40 -0500

   no worry but conscious in a vague way of the thin
   line between living and 'dead' ones these days 
   midway past equinox toward solstice.

Date: Thu, 25 Dec 1997 23:26:24 -0500

   Expect you had an enjoyable day, 'cause kindness is in the air
   and magic accompanies it.

Date: Tue, 30 Dec 1997 12:02:57 -0500
   Receiving your mail smiles me and the sun shines outside.
   Yesterday soft snowballs fell in gaudy profussion for an hour
   after a morning of sleety drizzle.  The white stuff was welcomed
   by all and didn't interfer with driving in this area.  The earth stayed
   white overnight and this morning's sun was a celebration
   of the turn of the solstice.

   (I only think this way when writing you lately; somehow a touch
   of grace (t)here (-_-)

Date: Sat, 3 Jan 1998 16:30:32 -0500

	Fine quiet
	opens the range of possibilities
	under the sky I pee in the snow.

	no parting formality;
	rather, continuing connection

Date: Tue, 13 Jan 1998 11:38:49 -0500

	but isn't the mind always flowing, in flux, or rearranging stuff
	with every new bit of information (enform) sending ripples to
	all corners of assumptions and functioning? 

Date: Fri, 30 Jan 1998 09:12:09 -0500

	Yeah Snow and more snow.  

	Tuesday was amazing;
	it came in fist size puffs, then handball heavy clumps;
	finally tapering to soft golfballs steadily falling straight
	down.  The downrush was as strong as heavy rain but
	White, changing the whole world.  Loved being out daring
	to look up, making tracks, putting out sunflower seed
	for birds, alive like a child padding along in my snow suit. 
	At night it continued with smaller snowdrops and trees
	snapped, the house groaned.

	Wednesday we waded through crotch high piles, relieved
	with knee high spaces, up to the stream:  water supply in
	good condition.  Coming back. beating the path down and
	exhausted, slept in the afternoon.

Date: Sat, 31 Jan 1998 16:28:06 -0500

	All bundled up in fat jacket, leggings, gloves, hat and scarf,
	I trundle happily up the path into the woods to look at the
	overflow from the resevoir and clean out the catch basin.
	Snow on the ground reminds me of childhood forays into
	the woods near my house; and the serene solitude of the
	new fallen snow.  Friends often stayed inside for reasons 
	of parental caution or unknown reticence.

	Alone there was no need for ego, knowledge and the
	ensueing defence system.  Alone, alive in the world,
	was understanding and connection, a sense of spirit
	or This ! which Budhists speak of.

Date: Sun, 1 Feb 1998 16:07:10 -0500

	> Celso: 
	> The mind is the loop.  
	> The mind is the game.  
	> Nobody doesn't exist beyond the mind to disentangle the mind.

	Or exist?

	beyond the mind, existance is indefinite, unreportable
	and yet there is a wonder and energy finer than mental
	energy dares to explore

Date: Tue, 3 Feb 1998 11:19:02 -0500

	'Nother storm coming, Egad.  Ek
	Go get the groceries down at the neighbors (Griffins).
	Went to town with Vickie Griffin yesterday but could only
	carry half the stuff up even with Vickie helping.  Still 10"
	in spots, more in drifts, and down to ground level under 
	heavy pine trees, which caught a large share of snow
	and subliminatingly bounced it back.

	No sun syndrome sets in, sigh.
	And, !! now I seethe phone  line is down.

	Ah Peace and Equinimity.

Date: Wed, 11 Feb 1998 06:57:12 -0500 (EST)

   Finding an old friend makes one review both intervening years and the
   mutual leaving off place, and this changes perspective even if slightly,
   adding interest and understanding.

Date: Thu, 5 Mar 1998 14:53:25 -0500

	Smiles and warmth on this dank day
	Now down at the unheated house of
	our neighbors (who are away on a trip)
	with electricity flowing (-_-)

Date: Mon, 9 Mar 1998 16:16:33 -0500

	attending to hollow sounds
	urges silence:
	word fast

	Never have been predominantly visually inclined
	wider interface than visual prevails
	but lacks focus and continuity, 
	instead arising in each moment

	> Sincerity and goodness ought

	nay, sincerity shines 
	(never ought ! )
	... or is missing, or faint.

	to speak of candor rather than 
	just to use it unconsciously
	may be a topic for mind but why bother.

	the truly good ones live sincerity and
	it is seen by those who recognize this as an aspect of self.
	the wannabees might catch a whiff of this;
	shun no one who is open to learning.

Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 15:15:17 -0500

	heavy hoar frost on the high ridge to the east;
	some blue sky so i dare to look at this backlog
	of email.

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 17:05:00 -0500

	My fingers are so dirty with the rich warm soil
	so uncleanable even with a brush and playing
	at the sink with suds, that i shouldn't be allowed
	to use a keyboard.

	Spent hours transplanting, cleaning mulch
	away from blueberry bushes, cherry tree bushes,
	grapes and weeding the asperagus bed.

	Have slipped into an unintellectual mode; few
	words or ideas present themselves.  Close my
	eyes and see earthworms, roots, leafmulch.

Date: Sat, 28 Mar 1998 15:35:08 -0500

	... from TFE (The Forest Edge)
	" Harmony is the law of life, 
	discord its shadow; whence 
	springs suffering, the teacher, 
	the awakener of consciousness."  H.P. Blavatsky

Date: Thu, 26 Mar 1998 11:35:47 -0500

	here on the ridge spring announces itself gently;
	tiny white flowers on delicate rosates offer themselves in the
	asperagus patch and among the licorace smelling agastache

	earthworms emerge with red bands developing for mating
	cats killed a baby vole; 4 ants and a spider in the kitchen

	living, loving in the sunshine

Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 20:04:39 -0500

	and now warming to hot and muggy weather

	having fun bouncing around with 10 year olds
	these last two days.  so much energy and
	interactions...a rich matrix for learning but of
	any and all appropriate material and nonmaterial
	concerns..  whee 

	simple (unsophisticated) intelligence 
	by glints and flashes

	origional mind still in play

Date: Sun, 10 May 1998 07:59:18 -0400

	hiya Johno

	conscious of the intraconnected/source/conditioning
	nature of my being to this extent - of the moment-
	seems a tenuous thread
	and just what i use for filters/selectors
	(brain=filter; nerve endings=selectors)

	and accepting my vast ignorance of seas of
	nuance biological and 'mental' (math, music, language)
	and accepting rich experience and gifts of help, smiles;
	love in short

	gifts of relationship (knowing thee):
	space to grow/learn; with open wonder
	allows all without conflict

	and conflict is seen for the short sighted harmless 
	pattern which it is

	words flow out fingers rather then by tongue lately
	so i just felt like writing and also
	Greeting Good Friends  	
	together, one email...spring celebration
	*and* the celebration of fixing this email server

	choosing (selecting) - to whatever degree -
	perceptions and conditioned interpreted reality,
	that is, choosing both what i see (perceive) and
	the awareness of conditioning and therefore the 
	ability to 'retune' or erase strings of programming
	and alert to the actual, both taught and invented
	constitutes some of the connectedness
	this coherence i've learned with you (plural)

Date: Tue, 12 May 1998 16:26:59 -0400 (EDT)

   >>what is it about this season, this spring?
   > There, you're going to have to tell me.
   the obvious, of course, the renewal of function, of growing, blossoming,
   reproducing, the cycling out of life...more abundantly this year with its
   unusually copious rain. 
   And, with
   the relaxation possible in warmth and nurture of beauty, there is opening
   to possibilities both created and reprogrammed.  fecund soil speaks to
   potential of mind; playful breeze loosens the grip of winter patterns.
   this spring is the most prolific I've seen; extra rain (almost twice as
   much as normal here) means double the germination, double the speed of 
   yes, and bringing forth life from the mulch and hidden seeds encourages a
   similar psychological process.
   >>and i ask your definition of "subconsciou(s)ly.
   > Subconscious cognition:
   > An act of cognition that is not at the moment of its happening
   > available for rational scrutiny and attention.
   yes, i see, it's just not immediately available to attention...but may be
   accessed in dreaming or by association(?)
   > --------------------------------------------------------------------------
   > To Think;
   > 	The goal (value) directed use of mind: one kind of mind process.
   > Not included is the quality of process, or quality of result,
   > nor the level(s) of consciousness involved.  There can be effective
   > thought or ineffective thought, analytic thought and synthetic thought,
   > linear thought and nonlinear thought.  Although "thinking" is value
   > directed, there is no value that can be assigned to the process itself.
   ah...value directed functioning, agreed

   > Context of the verb:
   > The central nervous system is the plastic hardware.
   > Mind is a process that exists as a software running on the hardware.
   > Unlike your PC, Mind and CNS can and do modify each other.
   > CNS is supported by and connected bidirectionally to a complex of
   > "Open Systems" which are themselves connected to each other:
   > circulatory, homeostatic, immune, endocrine, ....
   > The very openness of each system to all others makes the conceptual
   > isolation of "system" more useful as one understands better the
   > specific ways in which the systems are not isolated.
   > One can question whether or not "Mind" is truly confined to CNS.
   boundaries of Mind seem to be an irrelevant consideration.
   sitting in quiet for long periords, examining the activities of mind, led
   to this view
   > ----------------------------------------------------------------------
   > I think this a "most general" definition that works for scientific
   > discussion.  Common usage is different in that it implies and includes
   > values and qualities that tacitly assumed by the speaker/writer.
   > This silence is safe and the assumptions can be understood if the
   > speakers/writers knows well to whom they speak, but can become a matter
   > of confusion if the knowledge is faulty or absent.  The assumptions
   > can also become a point of argumentation resulting (by thought) in
   > better thought, or it can become a matter of argumenttion simply for
   > the pointless point of argumentation.
   pointless argument can be a dodge for adjustment or refinement, a
   > All thought about thought us ultimately circular, since before thought
   > comes distinction, and before thought about thought comes the distinction
   > of thought itself.  Knowing this, we are not deterred.
   > Mind is profoundly influenced even to the point of determination by
   > the senses via the peripheral nervous system.
   > Question: Is mind wihout senses recognizable?
   senses are basic to life, imo; interesting to see their compensatory
   adjustment when one (or more) sense is missing
   > Question: Is the distinction of homo sapiens sapiens the ability to
   >           think about thinking?
   > Question: Is the ability to think about thinking, that is, to question
   >           its own thought process both the source of it survival and
   >           also of its own annihilation?
   > Question: Does nature really make value judgements that have any
   >           intrinsic meaning?  Survival of what species, where?
   > Amswer:   No.  The fundamental quality and value is chaos.
   >           Teleology is absolute fiction.
   > Question: Is negative thigmotropism always pain?

Date: Thu, 21 May 1998 22:35:19 -0400

   I'm doing this (listen, watch bits whizz by, stay alert sometimes)
    to learn software/(hardware) application and am still
   at the stage of understanding maybe 2.08% of the gibberish.
   But other learning, that is, with self observation, gardening realities
   and experiments, public relations (at MAIN), car maintanance, etc.
   is encouraged by the effort to sort and understand computerese.
   We are programmed to think in linear terms.  Why?
   To manipulate the environment as directed by ego
   (or intelligence as the case may be).  The Chinese, Egyptians
   and Maya with pictoralgrams heiroglyphics, etc. seem to 
   communicate with whole concepts, but generally arranged
   in that linear pattern ... why?  (easier  i guess)
     center 				response
   from the 		what if                  creation
           outward				communication
   	express 		        tendancies
                  	could                   attitude
   while eating peanut butter and raisons and playing FreeCell
   on the side  ... and J has gone to get ready for bed on schedule
   so we
   can rise with the sun

Date: Fri, 22 May 1998 15:08:22 -0400

   when i was a preteenger
   i played with a swirl of energy
   unfamilar and indescribably other
   which drew gently and radiated me out
   then coming back from deep into
   this vortex of in/out energy
   i decided the safe thing was to
   stick to sanity and stop playing around
   I went all of the way through the vortex, rather that resisting it.
   never knew even this much about it
   until 40 years later when sitting for meditation
   practice, a distinct state arose of similtaneous
   radiating outward from a center/flowing inward to
   this center...and today I look up the word quaquaversal
   new to me and delightfully balanced/descriptive
   Yes balanced is what is needed to expand in all direction at once.
   Subject: relationship
   Now I talk with myself in your gracious company:
   open, as i care to learn, finding resonance, some
   understanding (which may mean "walking along with"...)
   communion created and energized
   as we relate in this monentpossibility
   Here are you, close relative Who calls forth that which
   Is from different perspective and as I see this
   resonance echos.
   as an aspect of thee, responsibility is an honor
   and a flower/smile (Dylan, age 3:  flowering::smiling)

Date: Fri, 29 May 1998 07:23:06 -0400

   Subject: performance

   we meet thru ideas felt and conveyed by words
   matching, interpenetrating the experience who 
   we are; encountering Thee i find vast unfamilar
   ideas opening horizons & prompting coherence,
   inward centeredness, validation of identity.
   i know expansion 
   finds opposite coalescence
   (in the way zero suggests infinity)
   and the heart is almost too full to send this 
   >> ah, now,  my Brother, say something in defense
   >> of the drama.....
   > The show isn't *not* part of you.
   > It is a way of expressing a part you that can't be expressed otherwise;
   > maybe J sees you differently (almost certainly).
   > I see, however, that this why there are poets, writers and composers.
   >> now that's the first i've seen you as brother,
   >> must be getting over the awe complex which
   >> kicks in upon meeting someone brighter than
   >> bright
   > I luv it!!!!!!

Date: Sun, 7 Jun 1998 11:27:16 -0400

	This honor humbles/enobles the self image and frees
	attention from the task (ongoing maintance of self image).

	Merci buttercups, as we said when we were 
	in the terrible teens.

	Okay, I will bookmark the page.  I seldom go online
	these bright prosperous garden days; except like
	now when the muse draws me...is that *you*
	just getting up??!!  (You are a/musing...
	egad these are love letters with love broadened to
	friendship and interest of all sorts.  That would
	explain the muse bit anyway.)

	No deletions nor changes....

With those selfreferencing words, this page closes itself in incomplete completion.

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Created: May 24, 1998
Last Updated: May 28, 2000