cookies, enlightenment, meditation, zazen, zen


contemplating cookie

They say you can’t chase after enlightenment
As long as there is dualistic thinking,
an “I” seeking an “It”
or belief that there is some “thing” that can be attained
then the student will continue wandering,
condemned to a morass of delusion

Soooo, while I am just moping around waiting for enlightenment to find me,
Perhaps I should just settle for “enlightenment-lite”
a little less stress, a wee bit more carefree time to wander about….
wait, I do that already….
ok, maybe I could give some of my precious time (gasp!) to another
To achieve this somewhat-selfless ideal, I could try the incremental method:
Each time I sit down to meditate I could strive to leave one thing behind-
one care, one selfish thought, one craving.
(Notice the “I” is still present in this pared-down aspiration.)
Who knows what Wonders this may bring?
I may begin to feel a little less stretched,
some cracks may appear in my selfish armor
and perhaps, just maybe……. someday,
after countless eons sweating away my gazillions of selfish thoughts, cares and cravings,
there may come a point where there is nothing left, and I will just levitate and float away
in the ethereal bliss I so justly deserve….. just imagine……
but wait….. are there cookies in this realm?  oh Damn!, one craving left…
Thunk, down on my ass I go!
“I” might as well go eat some cookies

meditation, poetry, rebirth, zazen, zen, Zen Poetry

after August rain


mushroom closeup

From the dark earth
freshly-formed mushrooms emerge
Young Red-tailed hawk squeaks:
“Feed me!”
The mockingbird answers:
“Feed yourself”, in its hawkiest voice
Old/new water now tickles
the weeds in the stream
Emerging from the musty barn zendo
what may appear humdrum
is athrum with nowness

poetry, zen, Zen Poetry

Apprehending Beauty

Trailing Arbutus

March 31

Walking the power line cut
through dormant scrub oak and sweet fern
the shaly terrain full of briars and ticks
and there you are:
Trailing Arbutus, ephemeral harbinger of the season
Your prostrate form, tiny white flowers, and simple evergreen leaves
adorning this bleak scene.
Am I the only person who will see you?
Appreciate your brave arrival in this not-yet-Spring-time?
And beauty?……
Is it a thing out There?
Mere perception?
Do other creatures feel some difference in the wind or humidity?
Do they revel in the minute changes on the mountain?
Perhaps for them beauty is just
flitting, crawling, eating, mating

poetry, winter solstice, zen

Things we used to Know- Winter Solstice

nov-feb 2014 172

Before morning, we knew where the sun would rise
At midday, how high in the sky.
At dusk, over which hill it would set.
Then , which star would be first to wake up,
where and when the moon would appear
and in which guise.

We knew that when shadows are longest
still the sun creeps northward
twig by twig, each day
as it rises anew in the southeastern sky.
We knew the startling hoot of the great horned owl
would come one moon before
the “phoebee” call of the chickadee,
and the phoebee call one moon before
the sap would drip from broken maple branches.
We may have dreaded cold-hearted winter then
but the return of the light was not in doubt