ERR GO

There is a reason for all things
and therefore there is a reason for this
although we cannot begin to fathom
what that reason could possibly be, which
should be reason enough,
for reason has a twisted soul:
now playful, now angry, now vengeful
in irregular turns without warning.
The problem with seeking the reason
for things is deeply hidden, and not
as some imagine that it is difficult, no,
the problem is that the search for the reason
has its own reason needing to be discovered
and so on recursively back to the Big Bang
which still, to this day, has
the ultimate undiscovered reason.

MINISTER PEIXIU SEES A PORTRAIT

You are perpetually searching,
but what is it you seek?
If you say it is wisdom,
how will you know it
if it finds you?
You may look
in a thousand mirrors
and no mind
will be seen
in none of them.
You are an oyster,
where is the pearl?


A reflection on Case 9 of the Shobogenzo, the True Dharma Eye

DOUBLE ESPRESSO

Buddha walked slowly into the coffee house

and ordered a large mochachino.

He approached the sofa in the corner

and folded himself neatly and precisely

into and among its overstuffed cushions

to the delight of a five year old

pulling at his mother’s sweater

as she struggles to finish her latte.

“The body,” Buddha says

to no one in particular,

“is the finest form of origami

for even the great master Tsujimoto

has yet been able to duplicate it.”

He watches the comings and goings

constantly sipping at his always full cup.

He picks up a dog-eared copy

of the Analectics from the table

and breaks into a wide grin,

good old Con, he mutters, they never have

figured out how to translate you.

An old man, stooped and half blind,

shuffles over and, in what must

approximate a bow, says “Master

where can I find enlightenment?”

“My child,” Buddha responds, unfolding

and refolding his legs and arms,

“why do you seek it— it won’t bring you

much beyond what you have seen –

but if you truly wish to find it,

it lingers just behind you, so stop

looking, for surely it has found you,

now you let it catch you.”

The Buddha unfolds herself slowly

pressing out the seams

of her plaid skirt and shuffles

quietly into the traffic along the avenue.

My cappuccino is now cold, I think.