Leave the Path Open (plus another koan collage)

made of light s

When I was young I tried to order my life around. I thought if I played by the rules, everything would work out.  But the rules wouldn’t play back.  Once I gave in to the inevitability of life’s whims, what was happening to me became a lot more interesting.  Not easier.  Never smooth.  But sometimes I found wonder and enchantment.  And even sometimes grace.  I just needed to leave a space without expectations to be filled.

I walk through valleys
behind a path that opens–
my cup overflows.

polar bear s


I know, there’s a lot going on here.  Frank at dVerse asked us to consider in haibun an occasion when we were pleasantly surprised.  It was difficult for me to focus on that idea because every day I’m surprised (albeit some days more pleasantly than others).  The haibun explains why.


I was also working on a collage for the painting Jane Dougherty challenged us with, above, by Hugo Simberg.  It doesn’t have much pleasantness about it, and my collage also looked somewhat apocalyptic to me.  But the Collage Box Oracle had its own ideas about the images.  And, somehow, it fits.

Bodies are
made of light
and shadow.
Does chaos reflect
the meaning of
The Inner Cosmology?–
Lives balanced
on the unexpected.

owl s2

…and, well, you know…owls.




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About memadtwo

For more madness, follow me on Instagram @h_zimel

38 responses to “Leave the Path Open (plus another koan collage)”

  1. outsideauthority says :

    Interesting peek at the younger you. The polar bear is really striking trailing her hind leg in another land. Fascinating

    Liked by 1 person

  2. revivedwriter says :

    This is a nice, reflective piece. Your collages are fascinating, too. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jodi says :

    Deep stuff! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  4. petrujviljoen says :

    I found these two poems with the artworks really impressive! … and inspiring!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Frank Hubeny says :

    The rules not playing back opened a space for the unexpected. I like the haiku with the path opening and the cup overflowing.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Jane Dougherty says :

    I think you’re right to look on it like that, the painting, life, everything—it’s all unexpected and chaotic.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Björn Rudberg (brudberg) says :

    I really like the thought of rules not playing back… you cannot go without taking shortcuts sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Olga says :

    Interesting way to express the nature of ‘living’ life. “Leave the path open” to the unexpected with no expectations and embrace the wonders that may happen. Love your koan collages, Kerfe. Very creative! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Claudia McGill says :

    I really liked these. They expressed something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. What a gift of expression you have, words and images.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Lynz Real Cooking says :

    This is wonderful! Such interesting thoughts on youth! xx

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Sharon Mann says :

    It is through the writing and art that the path opens, thanks for posting your thoughtful process.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. MK says :

    I find this post inspiring. Thanks!


  13. Jill Kuhn says :

    I see some humor in your art today – especially when you talk about how life does’t play by your “rules.” I can so relate. I think life is a learning process… having some humor helps me to see the positive more than the negative. 😃

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Singledust says :

    i enjoyed your haibun as it gave me a sense that letting go was indeed part of being in control, love the images in the collage too, so much to look and ponder upon

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Sunshine Jansen says :

    The animals in this collage and the overflowing cup and grace all come together to inspire me to make a book recommendation for you: I just finished John Crowley’s epic “Ka: Dar Oakley in the Ruin of Ymr” and you were one of the first people I thought about who might appreciate its confluence of fantasy and natural history and human foibles, as well as its often stunning prose. And though most of the cast are crows, there are owls too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  16. merrildsmith says :

    I understand exactly what you mean, Kerfe. There is so much to think about here in your words and art.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. alethakuschan says :

    Wow, so much to think about here. And owls too!

    Liked by 1 person

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