Zen Poems – Nature

Unfettered at last, a travelling monk,
I pass the old Zen barrier.
Mine is a traceless stream -and-cloud life.
Of those mountains, which shall be my home?

– Manan


This slowly drifting cloud is pitiful;
What dreamwalkers men become.
Awakened, I hear the one true thing-
Black rain on the roof of Fukakusa Temple.

– Dogen


Light dies in the eyes, hearing
Fades. One back to the Source,
There’s no special meaning-
Today, tomorrow.

– Etsuzan

From Zen Poems of China and Japan
Translated by Lucien Stryk and Takashi Ikemoto

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