6 Comments
Sep 18Liked by James Roberts

I respectfully disagree with your notion that Ryokan

may have had doubts about his poetry and or poetry in general. My interpretation: his poem addressed attachment. Apparently, I may need to work on my responses.πŸ‘·πŸΌ

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Sep 17Liked by James Roberts

Zazen on Ching-t’ing Mountain

BY LI BAI

TRANSLATED BY SAM HAMILL

The birds have vanished down the sky.

Now the last cloud drains away.

We sit together, the mountain and me,

until only the mountain remains.

after Ryokan

who claims

that my mountain

is a mountain?

when you realize

there are no mountains

then we can speak together

about mountains.

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This is a lovely piece.

Rooks hold a very special place in my heart. As children, on our twenty minute walk home from the village school each day, with the sun already sinking from the cold winter sky, we would often see great flocks of rooks flying to their roosts. Their voices are particularly evocative of the feeling of going home, to warmth and soup and Bagpuss (or Ivor the Engine); of a very special kind of safety.

Then, for years, there were no flocks. But they have begun to return, here, and I couldn't be more pleased.

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