Three Pines and a Buddha - Part 2

Buddha Shakyamuni and the Eighteen Arhats

Buddha Shakyamuni and the Eighteen Arhats
Eastern Tibet, Kham region, 18th century - LACMA Collections

© Copyright 1999 A. S. Kline All Rights Reserved

This work may be freely reproduced, stored, and transmitted, electronically or otherwise, for any non-commercial purpose.


76.

That noise

of the cuckoo -

something deep

in yourself is

answering back.

77.

What we have deciphered

after great pain

was there to be known

from the very beginning.

78.

Grateful -

if in this scattering of ash

there remains one grain of gold.

79.

Your tongue

is the pen

that writes

my spirit -

mouth of an angel.

80.

I know how your whole being

flushes into your throat

and shoulder-blades

become wings.

81.

Still the red bee

refuses to die

at the heart of the flower.

82.

The poem

does not describe

the form

which is not

the poem.

83.

I do not express

the poem

which is not

the pain in me.

84.

What is there

that a deep love

does not call in question

profoundly ?

85.

Mouth

against mouth

the touch

of the idea.

86.

One thread of vein

from heart

to heart

pulls tight.

87.

In the dark sheets

full of fragrance

the mind

trying to stave off

the dawn.

88.

A worship

given

without thought.

89.

Where all these words

come from

one old man is going.

90.

A glass

of water

douses

the flame

of pain.

91.

In one sigh

the white peony

disburdens itself

on the ground

the hand touches.

92.

There is a dark sweet pain

that comes from the heart

of the rose.

93.

Odour of pine

that clings

to the fingers.

94.

In the ancient courtyards

too many gods

and cherry-trees.

95.

The Buddha -

one grey stone

in a basket of rice.

96.

The magic alchemical alphabet

of sun and rain

in which all our foolishness

is written.

97.

The sound created

the idea of the frog.

The idea of the frog,

created the idea

of the sound.

98.

Are you the blind river-nymph

of midnight's bed -

the fragrance of wet flowers ?

99.

On top

of the mountain -

no more world.

100.

Mouths full of fragrance.

Plum-blossom mixed with perfume

night after night

our singing souls

crossing an azure sea.

101.

The heart

of the flower

which opened

is not in time.

10.

Sound of flags

and prayer-wheels

from the heap

of stones.

103.

With this breath

only love.

104.

Feel this Buddha's pain

cold bronze

under your hand.

105.

Touch once more

this body of love

that lifted you up

and now

cannot let you fall.

106.

Feeling the invisible Buddha

inside the visible core.

107.

Alone

the eye

watches

the moonlit wall.

108.

Now it is revealed

what hides

at the white chrysanthemum's heart.

109.

In the bed

plum-flowers

and the fragrance

of eternity.

110.

This colour

of the rose

that we can only see

with eyes closed.

111.

Beyond Earth

and looking back

the entwined butterflies.

112.

The poem

of the peony flower

has already

been written.

113.

Ink. Congealed breath

where an absent

mouth

shows itself.

114.

This arch of being

calls itself

the rose.

115.

In the casing

of hoar-frost

the closed bud

holds another

springtime world.

116.

Night and Day

remotely

touching.

117.

A column of pink light

this flute-playing girl

on a screen of silk.

118.

Flashing suddenly,

clearly, from the dark iris

the glance of gold.

119.

Water on grass on stone.

The bridge over the mountain stream

is a hundred threads of spray

on a wooden floor.

120.

Into your hand

one spoken word

surrounded by a mouth

of fingers

closes.

121.

Night -

the blind goddess

communing

with the inside of darkness.

122.

The water-drop

on the thorn

waits

and does not wait

to fall.

123.

The child's eyes

follow the words -

one mind.

124.

Shoulders of ivory

discrete form

which brings its own

purity.

125.

Under the stormcloud

the ancient pine-tree

is weary of all this turmoil.

126.

Thick-headed

that Buddha

of the incense sticks.

127.

Above a last patch

of daylight

an almost full moon

rises in the trees.

128.

Forgive

the silent worship

of this foolish man.

129.

When the breath

stops

will mind have stopped

yet ?

130.

Over the purple field

the shadow

of the storm

is passing.

131.

Over all the earth

one goddess of mercy

with a basket of fish.

132.

The sun and moon

are both

lovers of earth -

the blind adorers.

133.

Dragons and demons

of rain

dancing

in the cherry-trees.

134.

Over the pale sky

a sprinkling of silver dust

flecked with discreet gold.

135.

Suddenly

small children

with the heads

of rabbits

sit up

in the autumn grass.

136.

My boat is tied

to the curved bridge

in her garden

of red peonies.

137.

A panel

of gold foil

swaying

in the autumn wind.

138.

Pine and plum

stand up

to meet the moon.

139.

The deep radiance

always lingers

behind the skyline.

140.

These coarse pines

have skirts of mist

against the pale

wet mountain.

141.

Slight -

those imperfections

that increase the sense

of yearning.

142.

The real

never stops moving.

The unreal

never moves.

143.

The point

of pain

is where this poet

becomes a fulcrum.

144.

The irises

of Van Gogh

go to meet

the irises

of Korin.

145.

This indrawn

breath of gold

conspires to cover

with words

the silent paper.

146.

Amongst wild irises

the eight-fold bridge

crosses

the meandering stream.

147.

September -

ending with

a bird-filled mist.

148.

Savouring the moment

of the plum-flowers'

exquisite fall.

149.

Opening the six-fold sense,

all being

is in the one perception.

150.

The pine-tree points

the hour

of deep shadows

in the white sand.