Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Bamboo and Plum Blossom
Bamboo and Plum Blossom

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Cheng Hao (1032-1085)

Visiting Crecsent Pond

Cheng Hao

We circle the shore of Crescent Pond
To the north is a tower that touches the sky
The world has changed in the autumn air
We pour a cup for the evening chill
The image of a cloud pauses on the water
The sound of a stream lingers beneath the trees
Our tasks are endless there's no need to count
Let's meet again our next day off

Friday, September 28, 2012

Du Fu ((712-770)


Though a country be sundered, hills and rivers endure;
And spring comes green again to trees and grasses
Where petals have been shed like tears
And lonely birds have sung their grief.
...After the war-fires of three months,
One message from home is worth a ton of gold.
...I stroke my white hair. It has grown too thin
To hold the hairpins any more.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Thich Nhat Hanh

My head pillowed on waves--
I drift with the flow--
broad river,
deep sky.
They float, they sink,
like bubbles,
like wings.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Han Shan (c.750)

Once, my back wedded to the solid cliff,
I sat silently, bathed in the full moon's light.

I counted there ten thousand shapes,
None with substance save the moon's own glow.

The pristine mind is empty as the moon,
I thought, and like the moon, freely shines.

By what I knew of moon I knew the mind,
Each mirror to each, profound as stone.

- Han Shan, 750

Monday, September 24, 2012

Tao Chien (365-427)

Lingering Clouds

How fair, the lingering clouds!
How misty, the seasonal rain!
Darkness fills the universe,
Blurring the level pathway.
I sit quietly in the eastern study,
Drinking spring wine alone.
My good friends are far away.
Scratching my head, I long for them.

How fair, the lingering clouds!
How misty, the seasonal rain!
Darkness fills the universe;
The land becomes a river.
I have wine! I have wine!
Leisurely I drink by the eastern window.
I yearn to speak to my friends,
But no boats or carts come.

The branches of the trees in the eastern garden
Are again burgeoning.
With their fresh beauty, they compete
To attract my love.
As the saying goes,
Time is short.
How can we find time to sit together
And talk of our lives?

Fluttering, the flying birds
Rest on the branches of my garden tree.
Scratching their feathers, they sit
And harmonize sweetly.
I have many friends
But I think most of you.
I want to talk with you, but you are not to be found.
How I resent it!

Tao Chien

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Tu Fu (Du Fu- 712-770)


by Tu Fu

Roads not yet glistening, rain slight,
Broken clouds darken after thinning away.
Where they drift, purple cliffs blacken.
And beyond — white birds blaze in flight.

Sounds of cold-river rain grown familiar,
Autumn sun casts moist shadows. Below
Our brushwood gate, out to dry at the village
Mill: hulled rice, half-wet and fragrant

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Chia Tao (779-845)

Morning Travel

Rising early
to begin the journey;
not a sound
from the chickens next door.

Beneath the lamp,
I part from the innkeeper;
on the road, my skinny horse
moves through the dark.

Slipping on freshly
hoarfrosted stones,
threading through woods,
we scare up birds roosting.

Behind us, a bell
tolls in far mountains;
the colors of daybreak
gradually clear.

Chia Tao

Friday, September 21, 2012

Li Po (Li Bai- 701-762)

A Mountain Revelry

To wash and rinse our souls of their age-old sorrows,
We drained a hundred jugs of wine.
A splendid night it was . . . .
In the clear moonlight we were loath to go to bed,
But at last drunkenness overtook us;
And we laid ourselves down on the empty mountain,
The earth for pillow, and the great heaven for coverlet.

Li Po

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Ryokan (1758-1831)

A nightingale's song
Brings me out of a dream:
The morning glows.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Bodhidharma, Damo (?-536)

Flower Seed Sequence

Originally I brought the soil,
Buddha's infinite compassion.
From this one blossom drop five seeds,
The result, spontaneous combustion.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Yu Xuanji (844-869)

the late spring

by Yu Xuanji

lovers seldom come to this deep alley
their spirits have to linger on in dreams

whose fragrance of damask is this?
from which tower does this breeze blow the song?

sounds of drums in the street
disturb my morning sleep
magpies chirping in the courtyard
confuse my spring sorrows

how can I care
for things of this world?
ten thousand miles, my life,
like a boat unmoored

Monday, September 17, 2012

Wu Cailan (9th Cent.)

Favor and disgrace are meaningless --
What's the use of contending?
Drifting clouds do not obstruct the shining moonlight.
Let the ox and the horse be called,
To both I can respond --
But how could I let a speck of dust
Into the city of the mind?

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Li Ching Chao (1084-1150)

Autumn Love by Li Ching Chao
Search. Search. Seek. Seek.
Cold. Cold. Clear. Clear.
Sorrow. Sorrow. Pain. Pain.
Hot flashes. Sudden chills.
Stabbing pains. Slow agonies.
I can find no peace.
I drink two cups, then three bowls,
Of clear wine until I can’t
Stand up against a gust of wind.
Wild geese fly over head.
They wrench my heart.
They were our friends in the old days.
Gold chrysanthemums litter
The ground, pile up, faded, dead.
This season I could not bear
To pick them. All alone,
Motionless at my window,
I watch the gathering shadows.
Fine rain sifts through the wu-t’ung trees,
And drips, drop by drop, through the dusk.
What can I ever do now?
How can I drive off this word —

Saturday, September 15, 2012

YesheTsogyel (8th Cent.)

Now until the dualistic identity mind melts and dissolves
by Yeshe Tsogyel

English version by Tarthang Tulku

Now until the dualistic identity mind melts and dissolves,
it may seem that we are parting.
Please be happy.
When you understand the dualistic mind,
there will be no separation from me.
May my good wishes fill the sky.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Wang Changling (698-765)

Wang Changling
In Her Quiet Window

Too young to have learned what sorrow means,
Attired for spring, she climbs to her high chamber....
The new green of the street-willows is wounding her heart –
Just for a title she sent him to war.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Feng Gan Ji ("Big Stick"-9TH Century)

Poem After Hui Neng the Sixth Patriarch

Actually there isn't a thing
much less any dust to wipe away
who can master this
doesn't need to sit there stiff

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Hsu Yun (1840-1959)


We wander through Illusion, the World of Defilements.
We're like a man who climbs a tree trying to catch a swimming carp.
We go rolling along with ordinary dust
Blown to wherever the wind takes us.

Then, suddenly, a bath is prepared for us!
We're washed in the water of Caoxi!
Hui Neng's own clothes are laid out for us.
How intricate are the ways of the world!
How impossible to believe. How impossible to doubt!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Naropa (1016-1100)

The View, Concisely Put
by Naropa

Buddhist : Tibetan

11th Century

This mind that knows emptiness
Is itself the awakened mind, bodhicitta.
The Buddha potential is just this.
The sugata essence is just this.

Because of tasting what is,
It is also the great bliss.
The understanding of secret mantra is just this.
Means and knowledge is just this.

This self-knowing, while one is still defiled,
Does not depend on other things,
So self-existing wakefulness is just this.
Being aware, it is cognizance.

A natural knowing that is free of thought.
This self-knowing cannot possibly form thoughts.
Without conceptualizing 'a mind,'
Since it is not something to be conceived,
This original wakefulness, cognizant yet thought-free,
Is like the wisdom of the Tathagata.

Therefore, it is taught, "Realize that luminous mind
Is the mind of original wakefulness,
And don't seek an enlightenment separate from that."

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Wang Wei (698-759)

A Green Stream. by Wang Wei
I have sailed the River of Yellow Flowers,
Borne by the channel of a green stream,
Rounding ten thousand turns through the mountains
On a journey of less than thirty miles....
Rapids hum over heaped rocks;
But where light grows dim in the thick pines,
The surface of an inlet sways with nut-horns
And weeds are lush along the banks.
...Down in my heart I have always been as pure
As this limpid water is....
Oh, to remain on a broad flat rock
And to cast a fishing-line forever!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Ikkyu Sojun (1394-1481)

Like vanishing dew,
a passing apparition
or the sudden flash
of lightning -- already gone --
thus should one regard one's self.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Shih Ching (book of odes 520 BC)

Collecting Kudzu Vine

He went away to collect kudzu vine.
One day’s absence
is as long as three months.

He went away to collect wormwood.
One day’s absence
is as long as three seasons.

He went away to collect moxa.
One day’s absence
is as long as three years.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Fujiwara no Senekata (?)

How can I tell her
How fierce my love for her is?
Will she understand
That the love I feel for her
Burns like Ibuki's fire plant?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Yoka Genkaku, (665-713-the Shadoka)

No bad fortune, no good fortune, no loss, no gain;
Never seek such things in eternal serenity.
For years the dusty mirror has gone uncleaned,
Now let us polish it completely, once and for all.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Saigyo Hoshi (1818-1890)

In a mountain village

In a mountain village
at autumn’s end—
that’s where you learn
what sadness means
in the blast of the wintry wind.


Monday, September 3, 2012

Zhang Jiuling (673-740)


Tender orchid-leaves in spring
And cinnamon- blossoms bright in autumn
Are as self- contained as life is,
Which conforms them to the seasons.
Yet why will you think that a forest-hermit,
Allured by sweet winds and contented with beauty,
Would no more ask to-be transplanted
THan Would any other natural flower?

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Yosa Buson (1716-1784)

Clinging to the bell,
he dozes so peacefully,
this new butterfly