cuke.com - an archival site on the life and world of Shunryu Suzuki and those who knew him and anything else DC feels like - originally a site for Crooked Cucumber: the Life and Zen Teaching of Shunryu Suzuki - not crookedcuke.com | home| what was new | table of contents | Shunryu Suzuki Index | donate | DC Writings |

People in cuke.com-----People Index or link pages - for more people, see Interviews, Brief Memories, Suzuki Stories, LinksComments, and a few other places for some stragglers.

 Katharine Cook

Cuke Interview with Katharine which includes

March 2008 knee replacement email

A Green Gulch experience  involving pottery and power sent in early 2008

Incantation for People Tending the Watershed - January, 2008)

Because There was Lagunitas School

A Tassajara Story involving a late night return - sent in early 2008

Taking the High Road, Long Road In - posted 11-26-14

Summers by Lake Water - posted 12-11-14

Speaking of My Lovely Daughter - posted 5-16-16




12-14-15 - A poem from Katharine

How the Park Saves the Wildlife in Me

 

Whenever the all night industrial street noise

 surrounding my downtown Pt. Reyes apartment

keeps me up all night, finding me desperate

for restoration resources  in the morning. . .

 

I take myself to the Bear Valley State Park

Visitor’s Center in my ’97 Nissan van,

bought years ago for its spacious interior--

one that could accommodate a sleeping cot

should I ever need that --  and find the

one shady spot under a tree, if I am lucky. 

I put the sun screens up in the front and

back windows, hang my hand-sewn car

curtains on the side windows and sleep well

into the day for as long as I need, to recover

my health, sanity and good will. 

 

Just now back from a 4-hour excursion,

feeling rested and awake, I am glad to

be alive once more, thank the  Bear Valley

State Park for making my life, both wild

 and tame, possible once  more.

 


8-29-15 - from the Oberlin College Philosophy Club Newsletter. Katharine was a philosophy major there.

Katharine Cook ’59 writes: “I continue to be involved in citizen
journalism, writing for the Pulitzer prize-winning Pt. Reyes Light;
writing a garden column for our local website, West Marin Commons; and
participating with the West Marin Carbon Project in helping to reduce
global warming by sowing, distributing, and planting native perennial
grasses that draw down carbon from the atmosphere. I am involved in
sowing the seeds otherwise distributing the native flowering plants of the coastal
prairie as described by Kat Anderson in her book Tending theWild. We
just finished [in early May] a wonderful weekend of the Geography of
Hope Conference that brought together celebrities in the world of
restoration work, such as Diana Beresford-Kroeger, for talks and
seminars. The latter is sponsored by Pt. Reyes Books, who do an
amazing job of bringing folks on the forefront of ecological
restoration to our small town for annual conferences. Poetry reading
and other work is available at www.cuke.com; put ‘cook’ in the search
engine.”


Interview with Katharine Cook on KWMR radio in Pont Reyes, CA, interviewed by Lyons Filmer with Peter Martinelli commenting. [date to come]

- 90.5 Point Reyes Station / 89.9 Bolinas / 92.3 San Geronimo Valley

Thanks to Ms. Lyons Filmer, Program Director, for sending this audio to cuke

11-26-14 - I write an column for the West Marin Commons forum
on a variety of topics related to ecology and economy. . . I'll send
you an example.  mkc

Pretty good.  Love living in this small town nestled between Tomales
Bay and the Pacific Ocean.  Great bookstore, Geography of Hope
Conference every other year, Amber & son Simon close by.  Switching my
focus from mainly ecological restoration to writing. . .happily
working with the Marin Carbon Project:  www.marincarbonproject.org who
are at the exciting cutting edge reducing global warming by planting
pastures of native perennial grasses that bring down CO2 from the
atmosphere and store it as usable carbon in the soil. . . .while at
the same time providing local food.

9-24-13 - Minding the Earth, Walking by Katharine Cook


5-11-13 - Florales Ludi: Festival of Flowers with Games by Katharine Cook


9-06-12 - My Love letter to Plum Village:  Thay Nhat Hanh and the Brocade Fan - by Katharine Cook


9-02-12 - Katharine Cook and Peter Martinelli radio interview, - Festival of First Fruits, is on this page of Pt. Reyes' KWNR's site


6-29-12 - Update on Katharine Cook. Katharine has moved to Pt. Reyes Station, CA from San Rafael 3 years ago, drawn by the natural beauty of the place, vibrant community and other Zen friends -- i.e., Stuart Kutchins, Bing Gong. Her daughter Amber had been living out here for some time. Main activities have been writing for the West Marin Citizen, covering the annual Bioneers Conference, which takes place in San Rafael each October, writing poetry and gardening, hosting radio programs for KWMR. Currently working on an article about Suzuki Roshi's gardens at Tassajara for the Citizen. Hoping to publish first poetry collection soon.

She was able to bring John Liu, the leading international ecologist and film-maker who opened Bioneers 2011, to Pt. Reyes for a conference, and will be continuing to contribute to the Geography of Hope events sponsored ty Pt. Reyes Books. Putting "ecological value and function before an economy based on the production of goods and services" has become her mantra. Her joy is growing heirloom flowers and perennial grasses. Reach her at katharine.cook[at]gmail.com"


Speaking of My Lovely Daughter

 

I had not known it could be like this: awakened at

6:30 a.m.by the phone ring, I hear my daughter,  

solicitous for my well-being --  inquire after my state of mind.

Would I like to come over and sleep for awhile

on the extra couch bed in their living room?

Would I ever! It had been days with no sleep,

due to the industry, grid and 16 street lights

surrounding my place. No rest to be found here!

 

“”Yes, I would .”  She arrived in her familiar Toyota van,

offering clothing found for me in the Good Will.

My being sagging, I donned it, followed down stairs into her car. 

She drove to Pt. Reyes Affordable Homes, where she led me

 into her darkened living room, where her dog and another

being boarded  growled a bit.

 

Led to a low bed in the back of her living room, she

helped me undress into its warmth and abundant covers.

There, surrounded by a welcome quiet dark, was the

night I longed for. Low sound. No 16 street lights, traffic,

nor industry.  Not a womb exactly, but a hefty slice of

true night,  the way the earth feels when the sun is completely

down, the moon and stars up.  I stretched out into the pillows

 the thick quilts piled there.

 

Did I need any help out of my day clothes? ”A little,”

 I closed my eyes, grateful for the darkness that

filled the room into every corner.  I stretched and turned,

the little dog being boarded  yapped a few times until

 Drew, my daughter’s mate, quieted him down with

some strong orders. I lay there. . . quiet in true rest

 for a couple of hours. 

 

Then, queried about coffee and toast said “Yes.”

 I was brought to their kitchen table, still dark

 within the outdoor night.

 

She has a way with foods and service, learned through

 native crafts she has studied. The coffee was above par

with a spicy fragrance. Whole wheat toast, buttered,

cut into attractive shapes with jam offered, a colored napkin,

and company, her caring ways laden with personal artistry:

she showed me her latest beadwork, so careful in

choice of colors—sewn onto soft leather.

 

I am in awe of her spirituality, so well grounded in her

earth body, the fruit of years of practices: the teepee of the

 Native American church,  Amma from India.

 Her spirit nurtures me like no other.  Her name ‘Amber’

was gleaned from the movie ‘Amber Tibet’ by Houston Smith,

about that ancient community of Buddhist practitioners. 

 

Lying in bed pregnant I had noticed there were two colors

in the glass candle-holder  by my bed. Amber was one of them.

 

Katharine Cook - 04.19.2016