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  1. November 9th, 2016

    Two weeks ago, I went down to San Luis Obispo, California for a five day Jupyter team meeting with about twenty five others. This was the first such meeting since my return after being away for two years, and I enjoyed meeting some of the "newer" faces, as well as catching up with old friends.

    It was both a productive and an emotionally challenging week, as the project proceeds along at breakneck pace on some fronts yet continues to face growing pains which come from having to scale in the human dimension.

    On Wednesday, November 9th, 2016, we spent a good chunk of the day at a nearby beach: chatting, decompressing, and luckily I brought my journal with me and was able to capture the poem you will find below. I intended to read it at a local open mic the same evening, but by the time I got there with a handful of fellow Jovyans for support, all of the slots were taken. On Friday, the last day of our meeting, I got the opportunity to read it to most of the larger group. Here's a recording of that reading, courtesy of Matthias Bussonnier (thanks, Matthias!).

    November 9th, 2016

    The lovely thing about the ocean is
    that it
    is
    tireless 
    It never stops
    incessant pendulum of salty foamy slush
    Periodic and chaotic
    raw, serene 
    Marine grandmother clock  
    crashing against both pier
    and rock
    
    Statuesque encampment of abandonment
    recoiling with force
    and blasting forth again
    No end in sight
    a train forever riding forth
    and back
    along a line
    refined yet undefined
    the spirit with
    which it keeps time 
    in timeless unity of the moon's alignment
    
    I. walk. forth.
    
    Forth forward by the force
    of obsolete contrition
    the vision of a life forgotten
    Excuses not
    made real with sand, wet and compressed
    beneath my heel and toes, yet reeling from
    the blinding glimmer of our Sol
    reflected by the glaze of distant hazy surf
    upon whose shoulders foam amoebas roam
    
    It's gone.
    Tone deaf and muted by
    
    anticipation
    each coming wave
    breaks up the pregnant pause
    And here I am, barefoot in slacks and tie
    experiencing sensations
    of loss, rebirth and seldom 
    kelp bulbs popping in my soul.
    
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  2. in transit

    Standing impatient, platform teeming, almost noon
    Robo voices read off final destinations
    But one commuter's already at his
    He reached for life's third rail
    
    There is no why in the abyss
    There's only closing credit hiss
    The soundtrack's gone, he didn't miss
    Reaching for life's third rail
    
    We ride on, now, relieved and moving forward
    Each our own lives roll forth, for now
    But now is gone, for one among us
    Who reached for life's third rail
    
    We rock, to-fro, and reach each station
    Weight shifting onto forward foot
    Flesh, bone ground up in violent elation
    And bloody rags, hours ago a well worn suit
    
    I ride the escalator up and pensive
    About what did and not occur today
    Commuter glut, flow restricted
    A crooked kink in public transport hose resolved.
    
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  3. pedestrian musings

    I walk in monologue 
        through Berkeley's Hills
    Feet pressing into sidewalk firmly
    I eat the pensive mood 
        solitude brings
    And bite into the juiciness of
        self-reflection
    I write, first time in years,
        free verse impromptu
    Taking few dozen steps
        between each pair of lines
    I yearn, on tip-toes
        stretching high, to be expressive
    A mode of being longtime
        self-denied
    I'm walking home - from job
        I'll soon be leaving
    To find myself believing once 
        again
    That which I do defines 
        me not and feeling
    That which I am is
        good. enough. a lot.
    
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