There are moments, he said, when everything is suddenly clear, and obvious to me. But they slip away and their shadows quickly fade. She said, if you’d stop looking for the fog, the clarity might linger. Besides, she adds how do you know what is clear and what is not.
I think therefore I am. I think therefore you are. You think therefore I am. If either of us stops thinking, does the other cease to be? If I see you as Buddha you are Buddha. If you see me as Buddha I can be Buddha, but if I see myself as Buddha Buddha and I are mountains and rivers apart.
A reflection on Case 86 of the Shobogenzo (Dogen’s True Dharma Eye)
We greet as long lost friends, having never before met save sharing a place a decade apart. I strive to cling to what was there in that place, she, fueled by the frustration, has turned away just because of it. I go home to my words, she to her art, and we know our paths will cross again.
The room is awash in words, they pile up in corners, form untidy stacks that perpetually threaten collapse, strewing consonants like shards of ill broken glass. It might not be this way, for words need order, a rubric in which they are forced to operate. But here, in a room of poets, anarchy is the sole grammar, and in the face of order someone throws a Molotov cocktail as we are all consumed in the flame of self passion.
You assume you know the answer, and wait patiently for the question which is not forthcoming. This becomes your dilemma. You have acquired a catalog of answers, all awaiting questions that never come forth. Of course it isn’t fair, you know that full well, but that, too, is an answer that must await a question for which there is no questioner, so you must ask yourself why you accumulate answers, and that is one question for which you have found absolutely no answers.
The old bus shelter has spray painted walls and a broken metal bench. Each morning he shuffles up the hill, a battered leatherette briefcase clutched tightly in his right hand, a copy of the Seattle Times “Nixon in China” in the other. He sits calmly on the bench case between his knees and waits patiently for the bus that hasn’t run this route for the better part of sixteen years. Still, he waits until the sun sinks behind the 7-Eleven, when he shuffles down the hill toward his small apartment satisfied with another day successfully done.