Pathways by Edith Shiffert


By Edith Shiffert
Cover photo and sumi illustrations by Kohka Saito
116 pages, 8.5 x 5.5, perfect bound | $14

Pathways draws together a selection of Edith Shiffert’s poems spanning six decades. The poems reflect moments of transcendence, pathways through inner and outer landscapes, and the Buddhist and Taoist sensibilities in which she has immersed herself.

Song For a Bowl of Snow

Buddha flower, precious stem of bloom,
white apple never tasted, fallen fruit,
end this thirst.

Be mountain, be the oceans, breathed-in air,
be wise, be gentle, fierce, and then be still.
Have the whole

jewel start at, body being adored,
drinking of water, all there is to bare,
this flower.

“Shiffert has evolved for her insights a powerful style which combines a description of the most sweeping or the most delicate of human or natural events with entire areas of eastern philosophy. In her poetry even the smallest scene may represent both itself and the universe.” — Ann Stanford

“Behind her best poems is the echo of the Bodhisattva Vow, and at the same time the realization that all the combinations called reality are fleeting by nature.” — Kenneth Rexroth