The Lingering Colours Of Fire

On the way up to Wilbur last Friday, I could see the first autumnal shades on the hillside – maybe it was just the poison oak in Cache Canyon, but the reds were starting to show. While I was there, the temperatures were a notch lower than the previous two visits, in the nineties during […]

Firewood Becomes Ash

Last week I was reading that the UK was expecting record temperatures – it might reach 100 degrees. Knowing how excitable people there get as soon as it gets over seventy, I could only imagine what the scenes were like. And I was heading somewhere even hotter. It was 104 when I arrived at the […]

Abiding with the four elements

‘The four elements return to their natures just as a child turns to its mother; Fire heats, wind moves, water wets, earth is solid‘ – Sekito Kisen For various scheduling reasons, it is three months since I have been to Wilbur, and I was looking forward to going again, knowing the the spring greens of […]

The Moon Reflected In The Water

Driving up to Wilbur last Friday, in hazy sunshine, the spring colours brought to mind one of those Sisley or Pissarro paintings that I enjoyed discovering in my youth. The Capay valley was bright green, and then the highway was studded with redbuds the length of the canyon, the vivid pinks almost shocking. Even though I arrived in […]

What I Think About When I Am Running

The weather has shifted in the Bay Area: we had several decent bouts of rain, and now the skies are clear and the temperature is in the seventies. The wind has dropped, leaving a rare sense of peace and stillness in this generally windy city. My life has been quite full recently, with some lovely […]

Redbuds and Rain Showers

It was a quirk of the calendar that I ended up back at Wilbur just two weekends after my last visit. Spring seemed to have hardly moved along at all up there, though the road was now muddy and slippery in several places after the rain through the week. Driving up on Friday I had […]

New Moon and Shooting Stars

When I give zazen instruction, as I did last weekend at Wilbur, I always tell people to notice which leg they put in front (if they are sitting Burmese), or which foot feels easier to have on the thigh (if they are sitting half-lotus), and to switch out to see how it feels on the […]