Two upcoming workshops ~ Oct. 5 & Oct. 12+13

early morning NYC

Looking forward to these two upcoming workshops:

October 5, with Shundo David Haye at Zen Center

and October 12&13 with Jody Greene, at Yoga Tree, Castro

The Attending Eye

with  Shundo David Haye
Saturday, October 5, 2013
10 am – 5 pm

SFZC Conference Center at 308 Page Street

What do we see? How does what we see change as we regard it? How do we change in this encounter? Immerse yourself in a day of looking closely.

To take photographs means to recognize—simultaneously and within a fraction of a second—both the fact itself and the rigorous organization of visually perceived forms that give it meaning. It is putting one’s head, one’s eye and one’s heart on the same axis.
—Henri Cartier-Bresson

In this workshop, we will engage in different modes of attention, stimulating our receptivity and our agility of response. We’ll sit zazen. We’ll cultivate our close observation in a combination of writing and photography exercises. We’ll support each other’s work in an immersive, exploratory environment.

Hear how the mouth
so full
of longing for the world,
changes its shape?

—Mark Doty, “Difference”

Please bring:

  • a camera,
  • plenty of fresh paper and a juicy pen
  • a ready mind
  • your lunch

Fee: $80; $72 current SFZC members; $64 limited income. Some partial scholarships available; see About Registration, Scholarships and Cancellations. No one turned away for lack of funds.

The Intimate Thread: Reading as a Devotional Practice
with Jody Greene & Genine Lentine


Sat, Sun Date: Oct 12, 2013 to Oct 13, 2013 From: 1:15 PM – 4:15 PM Location: Castro

Over two afternoons, this workshop will explore reading as a practice of awareness, attentiveness, and devotion. We will consider reading as a sacred, embodied act, one that gathers body, breath, and mind in a single-pointed effort to attend with care.

When we read, we enter into an intimate relationship with the traces another person has left on the page, and join a living, vibrant conversation. Reading in this way requires us to slow down, to set aside some of the usual devices and distractions that can fracture our attention, and to suspend for a moment some of our expectations about the world and the people around us. In reading, we open eyes, ears, and mind to encounter the new; even and especially when we are rereading or re-encountering something we have met many times before. We greet the work anew, the work answers back, and a conversation unfolds.

Cost: $75 for both sessions, Saturday and Sunday.
$40 for Saturday Only

The works we study (poems, sutras, short prose) will span ancient to modern: from Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and short passages from the Ramayana to poetry by Hafiz, Emily Dickinson, Rilke, Mark Doty, among others.

We’ll engage with each other through and around the works we read. We will practice reading aloud to each other, and collectively. We will use both dialogue and writing to encourage and cultivate our capacity to respond patiently, with both heart and mind.

We’ll use meditation and pranayama to center and ground ourselves, slowing the usual habits of our busy mind. This workshop will consider reading as an embodied practice that takes place through the eyes, the hands, the mouth, and throughout the body as a whole – in gesture and in stillness.

Appropriate for all students and teachers of yoga, as well as writers and readers at all levels.
No experience or requirements beyond basic curiosity and the desire to encounter anew something you have probably been doing for almost your entire life: the simple and deeply pleasurable act of reading.

Students who wish to take only one of the two days are encouraged to take first day’s workshop if possible.

Jody Greene came to the practice of yoga in 2000, and her path to teaching continues to unfold daily through practice, study, and the karma yoga of assisting. She is deeply blessed and enlivened by ongoing studentship with her teacher, Janet Stone. In 2001, Jody began studying Zen Buddhism, and has practiced in both lay and monastic settings throughout the past decade. She is currently especially interested in exploring the intersections and diversions of Zen and Tantric Philosophy, under inspiring and inspired teachers Daijaku Kinst, Paul Haller, and Hareesh Wallace. In the interstices, she is Professor of Literature, Feminist Studies, and the History of Consciousness at the University of California, Santa Cruz



Schedule Updates, July 24

borageTonight we’ll resume our Wednesday sessions at Emergence (18th & Hartford), so if you’re interested in coming, just let me know! We’ll be talking about narrative and ordinary rituals, and we’ll discuss Nikky Finney’s poem/prologue, “Resurrection of the Errand Girl: An Introcuction.”

In schedule news, I will not be away for part of August as planned, so we will continue unabated through September. I’ll reevaluate Wednesdays and may change that day or time in October.  I like the idea of a weeknight session, but so far not many people have been coming to those sessions. I’m not sure if it’s just the summer, or if it’s a little too late in the evening, or who knows what?  I’m totally interested in any thoughts about a weeknight time & day that would work well for you if you’re interested in coming to weeknight sessions.

And there are many great things coming up that I highly recommend. Some of the highlights:

Dorothea Lasky, Adam Fitzgerald, and Geoffrey O’Brien at Booksmith Monday, July 29,  & at 851

Dorianne Laux and Joseph Millar at The Emerald Tablet on August 10

Mark Epstein will read from his new book, The Trauma of Everyday Life August 27 in Berkeley

Here’s the schedule through September: (All sessions are at Emergence at 18th & Hartford)

Wednesday, July 24

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Narrative/Ordinary Ritual

Sunday, July 28

Workshop Focus [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: The Stanza
  • Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for July 28

Wednesday, July 31

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Pattern

Sunday, August 4

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Endings

Wednesday, August 7

Generative Focus [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Titles

Future dates (topics to come)

Sunday, August 11, 18, 25; September 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

Wednesday, August 14, 21, 28; September 4, 11, 18, 25

To reserve a spot in any of these dates, please email me below:

Schedule updates: June 4

tall dogLots of new developments in the studio schedule.  Let’s just review the next few weeks here.

  • Last Wednesday, May 29, we inaugurated a new series of Wednesday sessions.  It felt very promising
    to be able to meet on a weekday evening and the space has a great writing energy so I’m excited about exploring the possibilities for this new space and time.


Wednesday June 5

Generative Session [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft topic: Syntax

Sunday, June 9

Workshop Session[Location: please email for address]

  • Craft topic: Syntax
  • Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for June 9

Wednesday, June 12

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Metaphor

Sunday, June 16

Generative  [Location:  308 Page St @SFZC]

  • Craft Topic: Metaphor

For any other questions, please email me below:

Beautiful Experiments on Splashes: A Poetry Workshop, Tomorrow!

Still space in tomorrow’s workshop

Come crack open some new poems~


Words strain
Crack and sometimes break, under the burden
Under the tension, slip, slide, perish,
Decay with imprecision, will not stay in place,
Will not stay still.  
T.S. Eliot, “Four Quartets”

Okay, okay. Yes, language is a notoriously unreliable and fluid medium, But still, we continue to approximate slippery perceptions, to cast our experience into form.  We return, as readers and as writers, to this profoundly subtle and responsive instrument through which we can relate to one another and investigate what it is to be alive.

What else to do with such a fallible medium, and still with so much to say to each other, but write poems anyway?  Poems that somehow leap free of constraints of form and time, and surprise us directly into immediacy.

Poems thrive in fresh attention. How can we come to our poems open, free of preconception, ready for anything? How do we nourish that capacity?  We’ll cultivate a supportive context and inquire into how we can further open our receptivity to the living, breathing poems at hand, the poems we might skip on our way to some inert ideal of a Poem.

The day will include generative exercises, reading, group discussion of students’ poems, some consideration of formal and technical elements, and above all, we will investigate matters of curiosity, and explore ways to say what we haven’t yet managed to say.

The workshop is open to writers of all levels of experience and cultivates an atmosphere of respect for each others’ risks and offerings.

Participants are invited to send one poem of their own to the instructor in advance with an accompanying question or suggestion for discussion to help tailor the discussion.

June 2, 2013

Morning Session:  10 – 1

Afternon Session:  2 – 5


Morning or afternoon:  $60

All-day $110

For an additional $30, you can register for an individual  1-hour conference with GL to be scheduled later.  (The regular rate for 1:1 sessions is $45 – $75/hour.)

Half-day + 1 hour private session:  $90

Full day + 1 hour private session: $140

held at the San Francisco Zen Center, Conference Center @ 308 Page Street (at Laguna)

For more information, or to register, please email me using the form below:

Wednesdays at Emergence, Starting May 29

map2I’m pleased to announce that we’ll be adding some new sessions on Wednesday evenings at Emergence Healing Arts Center in the Castro, at 18th & Hartford St.

We’ll meet from 7:00 – 9:00 starting on May 29.  Our first session, on May 29,  will be on a donation basis,  to introduce you to the new location.

The fee structure is the same for both locations and you can use your cards at both locations as well.

Wednesday Schedule

Wednesday, May 29

Generative [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Line
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday June 5

Generative Focus [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft topic: Syntax
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday, June 12

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Metaphor
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday, June 26

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Dialogue
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday, July 3

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Fireworks
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday, July 10

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Play
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday, July 24

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Multiplicity
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Sunday, July 28

Workshop Focus [Location: tba]

  • Craft Topic: The Stanza
  • Please email me here to reserve a space

Wednesday, July 31

Generative  [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Pattern

Wednesday, August 7

Generative Focus [Location: Emergence Healing Arts]

  • Craft Topic: Titles
  • Please email me here to reserve a space


trieste listeners

I invite everyone who has ever participated in the studio to come and read something!  It doesn’t matter if you haven’t been here in a while. Come on out! Each person will read for 5-7 minutes.

If you’d like to take part, please let me know by Wednesday, May 15.

Anyone who signs up later will still be welcome, but signing up by Wed. will be helpful for planning purposes.  Many thanks for your participation!

Please feel free to invite friends and family. Light refreshments will be served.

Admission:  Free for readers.  All others by donation.  No one turned away of course!

SUNDAY, JUNE 2, 6:30 – 8:00

Please email me below if you’d like to reserve a spot or if you’d like more information.

All genres welcome.

May 12: Mother’s Day Playlist

I’d like to begin this Mother’s Day playlist with Rachel Zucker’s notes on “Here Happy is no Part of Love.”

“I’m sorry but there is no new place for anyone to touch me.”

and with Michelle Tea’s spectacular series on xoJane, Getting Pregnant with Michelle Tea

with both of these I have the same feeling as I read them, that they are managing to articulate inflections of experience that never get articulated and that they manage to feel like they’re moving as fast as the mind, which is impossible of course, but there’s a quality of simultaneity and layeredness that feels like a relief.

Here’s the beginning of the rest of the list.

1. Robert Duncan, “My Mother Would be a Falconress”

2. Louise Bogan, “Medusa”

3. Grace Paley, “On Occasion”

4. Sharon Olds, “Physics”

5. Carolyn Forché, The Morning Baking

more to come

New “Semester!”

photo-1In the ongoing evolution/tuning/refinement/expansion of the studio, for the next three months, (and possibly beyond) the focus will alternate weekly between workshop and generative writing.  This way, we can take more time discussing the pieces people bring to the workshop sessions, and we can settle more fully into the writing & process exercises in the generative sessions.

Workshop Sessions [alternating weeks]

Here’s how it will work most smoothly:

Please email me here in advance to reserve a slot for the workshop days. There will be 4 15-minute slots available in each session.  Let’s see what happens if everyone signs up as often as you like.  This will also give me an indication of how much workshop time you would like.  And then if the demand exceeds what’s available, we can rework it, or add more times.

  • To start, reserve a slot on as many workshop days as you’d like, even if that means you’re signing up for every workshop day.
  • When you are bringing a poem for workshop, please bring 6 copies (in addition to your own).
  • If you have signed up for a workshop slot and aren’t going to make it that day, please let me know.

Generative Sessions [alternating weeks]

On these days, we’ll do a series of writing exercises and discuss different aspects of process.  There will be time to share work that comes out of these exercises for those who wish to have any initial feedback.

Craft Discussions [every week]

All sessions will include 15-20 minute craft discussion on the topic indicated.  These topics do not necessarily extend into the generative exercises or to the poems you bring for the workshop sessions.  Below is a provisional list of topics. I’m interested in hearing from you if there are topics you’d love to see included here.


May 12: Generative Focus

Craft Topic: Diction/register/lexicon

May 19: Workshop Focus

Craft topic: Narrative

Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for May 19

May 26: Generative Focus

Craft Topic: Reading/Performance

June 9: Workshop Focus

Craft topic: Syntax

Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for June 9

June 16: Generative Focus

Craft Topic: Metaphor

June 23: Workshop Focus

Craft Topic: Dialogue

Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for June 23

June 30: Generative Focus

Craft Topic: White Space

July 7: Workshop Focus

Craft Topic: Line

Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for July 7

July 21: Generative Focus

Craft Topic: Meter

July 28: Workshop Focus

Craft Topic: The Stanza

Please email me here to reserve one of four 15-minute workshop slots for July 28

August 4: Generative Focus

Craft Topic: Endings

Dates will continue into the fall~

The magic interval

Each advance purchase of a 10-session card includes a 30-minute private session.  Here is a schedule of available appointments for those 30-minute sessions. Email me below if you’d like to schedule a session.  And I recommend if your schedule allows, to have some free time b/w the session and the studio meeting, so you can write in that interval.  There’s something about that space, going from the close attention of the 1:1 to the possibility of then sharing the work a little later, that makes that intervening time seem kind of magic. Which it is!  And which, of course, all time is.
You can also use a studio session card for a 30-minute session.  (note: These shorter sessions take place before of after the studio, at the Mercury Cafe, or somewhere nearby, to simplify the scheduling process. ) And accordingly, if you wish to purchase a group of 30-minute private sessions, the fee is the same structure as that for the studio sessions.  They can be used interchangeably.  If you have any questions, feel free to email me.
May 12 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

May 19
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________ 

May 26 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

June 9 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

June 16 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

June 23 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

June 30 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

July 7 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

July 21
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________ 

July 28 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

August 4 
1:50 _______________
2:30 _______________

Other times are also available, for example, earlier in the day, or after the studio.