2014/02/24 Poems and Koans from Sunday Sit with Margo

Sentient beings
Have two choices, up or down,
Buddhas only one.
Try as you like you’ll never
Toss a stone out of this world.

– Clark Strand

* * * * *

You do not need many things

My house is buried in the deepest recess of the forest
Every year, ivy vines grow longer than the year before.
Undisturbed by the affairs of the world I live at ease,
Woodmen’s singing rarely reaching me through the trees.
While the sun stays in the sky, I mend my torn clothes
And facing the moon, I read holy texts aloud to myself.
Let me drop a word of advice for believers of my faith.
To enjoy life’s immensity, you do not need many things.


* * * * *

Too lazy to be ambitious,

I let the world take care of itself.
Ten days’ worth of rice in my bag;
a bundle of twigs by the fireplace.
Why chatter about delusion and enlightenment?
Listening to the night rain on my roof,
I sit comfortably, with both legs stretched out.



Why do you so earnestly seek

the truth in distant places?
Look for delusion and truth in the
bottom of your own heart.”

– Ryokan

Enlightenment is like the moon

Enlightenment is like the moon reflected on the water.
The moon does not get wet, nor is the water broken.
Although its light is wide and great,
The moon is reflected even in a puddle an inch wide.
The whole moon and the entire sky
Are reflected in one dewdrop on the grass.

– Dogen

* * * * *

What is this mind? 

Who is hearing these sounds?
Do not mistake any state for
Self-realization, but continue
To ask yourself even more intensely,
What is it that hears?

– Bassui