Sacred Work

I remember witnessing two Tibetan monks creating a sand mandala on the floor of a monastery in Tibet. It just so happened that this labor-intensive creation/meditation—probably seventy-something square feet of magnificently detailed imagery, composed entirely of dyed sands—was "completed" while my friend and I were being ushered through the space with dozens of other tourists/travelers. People gasped and scrambled for their cameras as the two monks moved seamlessly from pouring the final grains into place to sweeping away the entire image with large brooms. Many visitors were convinced the lack of a record was tragic. The monks, it seemed, were convinced of absolutely nothing.

The indescribably immense uncertainty undergirding all affairs bewilders me unto fatigue. (Does it bewilder you? I remember waking up for high school and longing to be the dog or the trees or anything other than a human on the way to a fluorescent box full of other humans. Melodramatic, to be sure, but also a sort of bewilderment, right? Longing to inhabit a wild form...) Sometimes I resent myself for being tired of the world. Less often (these days), I celebrate. Historically, when in the company of poets, I celebrate, which is perhaps one of the reasons why it feels so important to share and witness works of poetry in the world. But, given the monks and more, I also see (if not comprehend) how integral is the undoing of the doing.

Industry, in the modern sense of the word, is frustrating. For commercial purposes we groom (and, incidentally, spurn) language by clothing our endeavors with ubiquitous objectives like "development" and "coordination" and "proficiency." To what end?

Poets, like monks, contribute to the conception of no end. In response to bewilderment, poets put up no fronts and embrace the awesome futility of all constructs. Much becomes of this embrace, I think, in the sense that "much" is a mandala of "becoming." Poets return (re: verse), they re-wild (re: "Howl," re: pray). They abide the endless swing and flail of time. They hear the song of the swollen sky. They weep and laugh. They hold still.

I am grateful as ever for your attention to poetry—whatever your poetry may be—and to THE LUNE's humble initiative therein. Here are a few things we have been getting up to:

• Matt Clifford has graced us with another vibrant and versified thought-experiment: "I Dare You To Sell It." His words come at the start of a new period—and exciting list of future contributors—in which we are looking forward to sharing beautiful mindworks online with greater frequency. Please do consider reading our recently renovated call for submissions, "RISK DELIGHT," and sharing it with friends;

• Our Spring 2017 issue (coming out in April) features phenomenal new chapbooks by Mark DuCharmeTara Walker, and j/j hastain. If you are as yet unfamiliar with these poets, just click their names and you will enter a maze of experimental contributions to poetry and scholarship

Yours in the simple song,

Joseph Braun
Editor & Publisher