Fifty Dragons For Shen Lung

Dragon Amid Waves

Dragon Amid Waves
Soga Shōhaku (Japan, 1730 - 1781) - 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.


1.

Keeping his counsel

in the green jade

that dragon who knows so much about us.

2.

This clear night, brightest of moons.

is it true we are parted

only by the Dragon of the Milky Way ?

3.

Your sleepy head

Shen Lung watches

with one eye closed.

4.

At daylight you leave

the dragon in sheets of cloud,

wearied from gathering dew.

5.

Through clear water

see the coiled dragon.

Asleep at last that snake of jealousy.

6.

Visible like dragon veins,

the deep love that does not speak.

7.

Suddenly hearing a voice

from the dragon boat.

wi11 you ever know her true name ?

8.

Over all the summer sky

red scales of the dragon.

9.

In the white porcelain

one sign for "blue" and "dragon'

10.

What Shen Lung sees and knows

he can never tell.

11.

Like a dragon in the clouds

thinking of her

fondly in a dream.

12.

Trust your sleep

to this pillow.

One dragon riding

on a curtain of mist.

13.

What did we find

beyond the mountain

dragon rain, dragon clouds ?

14.

Gone in a moment

the Dragon of a Thousand Years.

15.

The white wake of the dragon

is this passing world.

16.

Beauty that shakes the whole body.

The breath of the dragon.

17.

0 Lady of the Jade Mountain

ride the rising dragon vortex.

18.

In the East the green dragon.

In the North the 'dark warrior'.

19.

Feng-shui is 'wind and water'.

Not to disturb the sleeping dragon.

20.

Coiled around the vase

Is this only a painted dragon ?

21.

Carried through seven heavens,

seeing you in a dream.

22.

Floating clouds conceal his shape.

Misted thought, dims

the neglected mirror.

23.

Plum-flowers drift in the dark bed,

Moon-shadows deepen in the fragrant pool.

24.

Over the energies

of the heavens

flies the true dragon.

25.

Alone again what have I ?

The dragon's wake,

the dragon's track.

26.

Again and again

I think of you

free like the white cloud,

silent like the pale water.

27.

Northern winds savour of winter.

The white fall is cold with spray

28.

Behind that mountain

lives the dragon,

mysterious in its dark valley.

29.

This waning moon

has lost its splendour.

Shen Lung will breathe new life again.

30.

You do not need

to dream of me.

Only accept

this silent friend.

31.

In the silence of the night

one dragon gazes at the Moon.

32.

Those who talk do not know,

Shen Lung knows

but does not speak.

33.

What do the white clouds

know about sadness ?

What do the dark waters

know about love ?

34.

This helpless heart

turned inside out

by the dawn wind.

35.

The jade congealed

in the morning

shows where the dragon passed.

36.

Waited and yearned

in the dragon silence.

37.

It was for you

the dragon came.

38.

Mask of snow

and fragrance of flowers.

Mist on the dawn tree.

39.

Was it the dragon only

stirred the tangled heart ?

40.

Did I choose you ?

Did you choose me ?

Dreaming each other

we both awoke.

41.

Nothing is lost.

The dragon found

its own image

in the clouds.

42.

Fragrant with the scent

of shallow water

this bowl filled

with the beauty of plum-flowers.

43.

Too far off to see him.

At last the clear dragon.

44.

Who is she ?

Who am I ?

A deep longing

confuses the mind.

45.

All night through

the bright dragon

tossing and turning

in the clouds.

46.

At the great dragon

gaze all your life.

When the dawn comes

bring me your perfume.

47.

See the dragon

touch the moon

white fire

across his scales.

48.

Like smoke, like water,

these thoughts and dreams.

49.

Dim in the new light

the vanishing dragon.

50.

After these words

see the real Shen Lung.