Cliff Crego's blog, whitebark—
Notes scratched into a stonepine snag, open to the light, clear air . . .

December 2010
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Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 6:42 am

The art of miniature is for me where poetry, aphorism
and metaphysics meet.

One gives attention to the sound and rhythm of language;
to the urgency and relevance of ideas as new ways of seeing
oneself and the world; and to logic and consistency.

For me, the art of miniature seems a natural fit, especially
in Winter. All day yesterday, I was climbing up through
a supremely beautiful landscape of deep, cold, wind-driven
snow. This is my meditation practice. The forms. Color
attenuated to slivers and blues. Crystals and waves, flowforms
of every description, but demonstrating unity of the most
elegant, and organic nature. The wind. From Northwest.
Leeside, wind-shadow flowforms running out from every
object, large & small — tree, stone, entire ridgeline –
for more than three or four meters. Amazingly beautiful.

The art of miniature is for me a kind of inner landscape,
where I go to get rid of unnecessary cultural noise & baggage,
the stuff we pick up everyday that weighs us down spiritually.
The harsh remark. The little failures that happen as we
try out new things. Disappointment. The noise and incessant
violence of Car Culture. Up in the land of snow, and the world
of miniature, there’s none of that.

Tell me, do understand why we do not see
the difference between true & natural complexity,
and mere complicatedness?

Complicatedness is just unnecessary difficulty.

And like mere intellect, we worship it. The Wall Street hit-
man who takes an almost sexual delight in his derivatives.
A perfect-pitch performance world that makes making
music look like barbed- wire and war instead of love.
Scientists telling us we irradiate ourselves to save the

Snow will have none of that. I bless Boreas and the
great winds of the North for blowing these thoughts
out of mind, and revealing a wholly different world
to me.



Friendship is a mirror which reflects spiritual essence, even
when this essence is not yet fully physically manifest. Because
such friendship is rooted in essence, it is timeless.


If you find yourself censoring your own thoughts, cutting short
new ideas simply for fear of being attacked or ridiculed by
government or family or friends, then you are most likely no
longer living in a free and open society. That’s bad.


Silence is the ground of musical sound; It is the motionless
interval or source of the new breath, the new musical phrase.


The Crow said to the Squirrel, “When Money speaks to Poverty,
have you noticed its tone of voice, the sort of questions it asks?”
The Squirrel scratched at the dry dirt and exclaimed, “Money never
listens; it doesn’t have to. Poverty always does.”


We shape the world and the world shapes us.

The Minotaur terrorizing the labyrinth of the Internet is not just the
commercialization of Eros into mere pornography, or the corruption
of news into more entertainment. Nor is it the horror of the potential
theft of one’s identity, or even the threat of all-out cyberwar. No.
The beast at the heart of the Web—devouring whole the minds
of countless youths and maids—is the endless chain of clicked
upon distraction.

Clearly, the thread which leads out of this maze is not more
technology, or the imposition of more blocks and controls. Certainly,
it is something more like awareness, or the timeless practice of meditation.
Here, there is observation of the fact of distraction. One simply looks
both ways, both outwardly (what) and inwardly (why), all at once,
and one click at a time.


For want of a single vote, the election was lost.

For want of an election, the democracy was lost.

For want of a democracy, freedom was lost.

For want of freedom, the republic was lost.

For want of a republic, the idea of a constitution was lost.

And all for the want of a single vote.

[this is a trope on a traditional ‘nail & horseshoe’
verse, a little poem that means much more to me
nowadays that I’m close to many expert horsemen . . .]

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