No GPS, just a map and compass. I triangulate. I adjust for the declination. If only I knew another accurate method for finding my way safely. I must be mindful of landmarks and adjust accordingly.
I’m not a fan of poems that require footnotes or long explanations, but I do like learning something new from a poem. That’s why many poems here have some notes included. For this poem, I feel it is useful to define two terms. declination – The deviation of the compass from true north is an angle called “declination” or “magnetic declination.” triangulation – Triangulation is a method of observing the direction or bearing within a map and compass in the field by using three landmarks in the terrain to act as the corners of a triangle.
I have always thought that knowing how to find your way in the world with a map, compass, and landmarks somehow translates to being better at navigating life without tools or aids.
In the clear light of this morning, calendarless, if not timeless, this lone flicker appreciates water that is not frozen, pecks the full feeder and pays this first day of the year no mind.
Zen and Daoist meditators attempt to reach a state of “no mind.” It is called Mushin in Japanese and Wuxin in Chinese. I learned about it in Zen study where it was described as “mind without mind” – a mind not fixed or occupied by thought or emotion and thus open to everything. It is translated by D.T. Suzuki as “being free from mind-attachment.”
A friend posted this new song today and it does seem to work with this poem.
Persephone has returned again to the underworld. The Sun paused for just a moment and where darkness had reigned, the light has begun to overcome it – but there is still darkness, cold, and sadness ahead.