Monthly Archives: July 2018

too alone to feel alone

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I feel that in the company of something true, a sadness could arise for all the time and energy spent — not only by one’s self, but by the multitudes — pursuing something false. Yet because it arises in the company of truth, it is sweetened by compassion, the seeing of which evokes another level of tears, and other qualities of sadness as well. In Zen, the term loneliness is used more often than sadness; they seem equivalent to some degree. You can look up sadness and Zen or loneliness and Zen and find different kinds of writings. Some of the writings refer to personal psychological sadness. However, I’m talking sadness that involves existence. I have not considered all the possible shades of sadness, so please offer your own in a comment.

Festival of the Rushes

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the drawing contest
comes to a close
i’m tired of it
although my fame has spread across the land
i know myself as a pebble
whose curve will never be followed
by the artist’s hand
saying goodbye
i climb into my boat
and row through a clump of rushes
to my small house
on the other side of the lake

[This poem carries the influences of the Chinese poet Tu Fu and the Japanese poet Basho, blended, one reflecting the other like green leaves reflecting darkly in still water.]