Don Cauble grew up in the South; received an MFA in Creative Writing/Poetry from the University of Oregon in 1966; has lived in San Francisco, Greece, and Denmark; and now lives in Portland, Oregon, USA. He has published several books of poetry:
Inside Out; Three on Fire; I am the one who walks the road: A collection of poetry by Douglas Blazek, Tom Kryss, Don Cauble, and poet-painter Linda Neufer.
This Passing World
is his first novel.
About himself he has this to say: "The details of my personal life matter little. What matters is who I am in relation to the timeless. My writings are an attempt to answer the question: Who am I? To follow this question is to take the journey of your life. It is the journey that will lead you to the source of your being (and the Source of all that is)."
A bone for the dogs
Desires come and go,
I do not detain them.
But I will sit here, quietly
listening to this passing world:
the noise of a car going by;
a dog barking angrily; a boy
playing on the sidewalk;
the rain dripping off the gutters;
the slow Oregon rain that falls
like a soft funeral train,
like the tenderness of a sweet friend
who died long ago.
I will sit here,
calm in this moment of solitude;
my individuality a bone for the dogs
that would devour us,
for those who would feast upon the earth
and perish of famine in their souls,
for those who would tear out my
heart, (if they could),
in the name of brotherhood,
Mother, Father, God.
I will sit here, lofty
in my heart as the redwoods,
unobtrusive as a scrub or
an ancient, gnarled olive tree,
invisible as truth,
mysterious as life, unknown,
1981 / Portland, Oregon
I just want to sit,
like the poet Neruda would sit,
deep in his thoughts of Chile
and the ocean and shoes.
I want to feel the breath of solitude,
like Castaneda in the desert at night,
listening to the heartbeat
of a moth.
I want to remember the Aegean Sea,
this ancient sea,
before it was invaded
by a surf of oil
and makeshift huts upon the shore;
and I want to walk
along the Great Coral Reef
and ponder a new world,
I want to drink strong, black coffee,
the way Gurdjieff did,
(so they say),
and sit with Henry Miller
in Paris, in a cafe
before the War,
before he went to Greece.
I want to sit like Chief Joseph,
who traveled freely among his people
—when this land was free.
I want to sit like Bodhidharma,
alone for 20 years,
without eating or shitting or masturbating.
(No one even knew Bodhidharma was there
under the tree. They saw only the tree
and the shadow of the tree.)
I want to sit quiet as a tear
on the cheek of Christ.
I want to drink this bitter cup;
I want to feel my aloneness,
without thoughts of bare bosoms
and the burning bushes of youth
and tomorrow; pleasure
and pain, we are constant worlds
entwined with nature's vines,
roots; flowers that fly away
in remote jungles; dinosaurs
that rule the world with profit
and greed and patriotism on their lips.
I want to sit, to know my aloneness,
to ask questions one must answer alone
to oneself, awakening
from the years of false pretenses;
the sham beliefs I have been taught,
the limitations I have chosen.