The Buddha, The Dharma, The Sangha

"Spiritual powers and their wondrous functioning--hauling water and carrying firewood." --Layman Pang, upon his realization

Sunday, February 15, 2009

St. Valentine's Day Poetry

St. Valentine of Terni overseeing the construction of his basillica



A man and a woman lie on a white bed
It is morning.  I think
Soon they will waken.
On the bedside table is a vase
of lilies; sunlight
pools in their throats.
I watch him turn to her
as thought to speak her name
but silently, deep in her mouth--
At the window ledge,
once, twice, 
a bird calls.
And then she stirs; her body
fills with his breath.

I open my eyes; you are watching me.
Almost over this room
the sun is gliding.
Look at your face, you say,
holding your own close to me
to make a mirror.
How calm you are.  And the burning wheel
passes gently over us.

--Louise Gluck


The Waterwheel

Stay together, friends.
Don't scatter and sleep.

Our friendship is made
of being awake.

The waterwheel accepts water
and turns and gives it away,

That way it stays in the garden,
Whereas another roundness rolls
through a dry riverbed looking
for what it thinks it wants.

Stay here, quivering with each moment
Like a drop of mercury.



Five Things

I have five things to say,
five fingers to give into your grace.

First, when I was apart from you,
this world did not exist, nor any other.

Second, whatever I was looking for
was always you.

Third, why did I ever learn to count to three?

Fourth, my cornfield is burning!

Fifth, this finger stands for Rabia,
and this is for someone else.
Is there a difference?




So, the year's done with
(Love me forever!)
All March begun with,
April's endeavour;

May-wreaths that bound me
June needs must sever;
Now snow fall round me,
Quenching June's fever...

(Love me forever!)

--Robert Browning


Sonnets from the Portuguese, XIV

If thou must love me, let it be for nought
Except for love's sake only.  Do not say
"I love her for her smile--her look--her way
Of speaking gently,"--for a trick of thought
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day
For these things in themselves, Beloved, may
Be changed, or change for thee,--and love, so wrought,
May be unwrought so.  Neither love me for
Thine own dear pity's wiping my cheeks dry,
A creature might forget to weep, who bore
Thy comfort long, and lose thy love, thereby!
But love me for love's sake, that evermore
Thou mayst love on, through love's eternity.

--Elizabeth Barrett Browning


Your Catfish Friend

If I were to live my life

in catfish forms

in scaffolds of skin and whiskers

at the bottom of a pond

and you were to come by

one evening

when the moon was shining

down into my dark home

and stand there at the edge 

of my affection

And think, "It's beautiful

here by this pond.  I wish

somebody loved me."

I'd love you and be your catfish

friend and drive such lonely

thoughts from your mind

And suddenly you would be

at peace,

and ask yourself, "I wonder

if there are any catfish

in this pond.  It seems

like such a perfect place for them."

--Richard Brautigan

Thank you friends, for your poems....

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