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Timothy M. Leonard's books on Goodreads
A Century Is Nothing A Century Is Nothing
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The Language Company The Language Company
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Subject to Change Subject to Change
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Ice girl in Banlung Ice girl in Banlung
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Finch's Cage Finch's Cage
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Thursday
Oct102019

Poem

Diamond mind wisdom

Women lay out golden chains
Men yak in phones
Gleaming significance weighs inlaid rubies, sapphires
Black Nil stones harvested from deep Earth
Glitter like 1000 stars
Path leads past mannequins
Wearing fashionable silent plastic splendor 
Unloading facsimiles of threaded prayers flowing from a woman’s mouth
Answer stirs ice
Question stabs ice
Scientific dissolution in liquid’s formless form
Shy beyond description
-    a girl weighs lettuce hills
-    cucumbers whisper adjustments
-    cell phone eliminates an old man's loneliness
-    a sharp hatchet congratulates bloody meat
-    a woman stabs ice memories
-    dead dog’s head rests on a counter
Ice coffee is bitter sweet my sweet
Hammock infant swings high/low
Contemplating an old woman

Stepping through puddles carrying a plastic bag with two tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, daily bread
Eye contact dissolves in the wake up
Sing song chopsticks carry an infant
Wide-eyed catastrophic entropy factoid

Grow Your Soul

Tuesday
Oct012019

Ice Girl

  Red dust Banlung town turned windy.

Swirling quality gem stone particles and degrees of indifference spiraled through air.

Redwood slats covered open sewer drains.

  Locals watched Leo with curiosity and suspicion.

They stared from a deep vacuum.

When he made eye contact they glanced away with fear, uncertainty and doubt.

They didn’t see many strangers here.

They listened at 49% or less saying yeah, yeah with panache.

  Leo's questions were constantly repeated.

  Questions grew tired of repeating themselves.

This is so fucking boring, said one question.

We are abused. We are manipulated and rendered mute. Useless.

It's a test, said another question. Patience is our great teacher.

I’ll try, said another question.

Yes, said a question, these non-listeners

have a distinct tendency to say more

and say it louder when they’re leaving,

when their back’s turned away from eye contact and potential real communication.

I’ve seen that too, said a question, who, until this moment had remained silent.

My theory is that it’s because of the genocide and fear. It’s also a delicate mixture of stupidity or indifference, said another question. Why is the most dangerous quest-ion, said one.

  Can you explain, asked a question.

Sure, people ran away to survive. People started running and others would ask them a question like

why are you running, who’s chasing you, where are you going

or what’s the matter or when

did you become afraid or why don’t you

stay longer and the one running would keep going

trailing abstract question words behind them

like memories or disembodied spirits or molecules of indifferent breath.

I see, said a question.

That explains it. Yes, said a question. Being correct is never the point. Tell me why oh my.

Ice Girl in Banlung

Friday
May312019

China Street

Here's a passage from an abandoned Moleskine notebook on street life in China.

After a long steady heavy rain

a pregnant woman propped her mop made of discarded rainbows -

as her solemn dispassionate husband shucked peas before removing garlic shells from their protective casing

after sky finished crying

washing student street where parades of disenfranchised youth sought shelter from the storm

open windows released cello notes

as a child sitting rigid practiced tuning their eyes to black notes on white pages

determined to master the instrument to please her parents

another music student hammered piano keys behind locked doors to please his parents

flies gathered around brown sticky paste dripping off a cracked plate

as feelers extended hope toward a thin white butterfly lifting off a green leaf

Type A

Type B

Saturday
Apr202019

Laos Poem

The blind man and his daughter.
He wore a felt hat. He gripped a wooden staff. His face was long and sallow.
The girl was 11. Wearing cotton, her face was solemn, shocked.
Both wore plastic flip-flops.
She held his hand.
They came to an intersection. Small buses, bikes, lost fat Europeans, orange robed wandering monks, silver vans. Women carrying bamboo baskets spilling oranges negotiated pavement.
The girl led the man across the street.
Their pace steady, yet hesitant.
She was his eyes. He trusted her implicitly.
A stranger drawing in his notebook watched them.
He pulled a 20 Kip note from his pocket.
He gestured to the girl, Take it.
She froze.
She spoke quick Lao words to her father.
Questioning, doubt, healthy uncertainty in her eyes.
The stranger gestured the 20.
She remained still.
He got up and slowly approached her. His hand extended the money.
His hand said, take it.
Her small hand emerged with caution. Her small fingers accepted the gift.
She smiled placing her hands together.
Her fingertips touched her chin meaning, Thank you.
She whispered to her father, it's 20.
His blind eyes darted back and forth.
He mumbled, Thank you, joining his hands.
His wooden staff hung in the air like a pendulum.
She led him away.

They disappeared.

Phonsavan, Laos

Monday
Apr082019

Poem

Kandinsky
Red, blue, yellow
Colors engage senses

Dust coffee rice
Home zone bamboo ice
Vocal chords
Language cultures
Eye-heart-hand shadow puppets

Music cleans ears

A professional stranger shows up
Among whisper smiles
Old man with bamboo staff coughs
Walks as voices decipher meaning’s intention

Plainclothes officer cleans glasses
With what they don’t know or understand
White paper

A girl loving geography
Lights four incense sticks with gratitude
Prays for good luck health and wealth

Dance now think later
Zen meditation
Line shading color
Burma, Laos, Cambodia - verbal and visual stories, imagination,

love, play, dreams, intuition, instinct, preparation,

luck and skill throw a party
Everyone is invited to the play

Grow Your Soul