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#1643 - Wednesday, December 10, 2003 - Editor: joyce (Know_Mystery)



Again Parting with the Kang Bridge

Lightly I went
As I had lightly come
Waving softly
To clear dawn-lit clouds.

The pale floating heart sits on soft mud
With swaggering blooms that glisten beneath water.
Yet I would willingly be a mere blade of grass
Gently drifting in the tide of the Kang river.

That golden willow on the bank
Is illuminated by its bride, the sunset.
The light casting an amorous reflection upon the current
Ripples in my mind.

The deep pool under the elm’s shade
Is not a crystal clear fountain; but colors are found
Scattering as shards of light between leaves
Once settled, a rainbow-like dream.

To search for a dream? It’s like bearing a heavy oar
Punting in reach of clear grass upstream, boundless.
The boat overflows with stars' radiance
A speckled celestial song released.

But I cannot play this music
For quiet is parting's chorus
Even the cricket is hushed for me.
Silent is this bridge tonight.

Quietly I went
As I had quietly come
Dusting off my sleeve
Without taking a single band of dawn-lit sky.

~  Xu Zhimo  ~

(translated from Mandarin Chinese by Jyothi Natarajan)

Away from my world I soar,
To somewhere I've never known.
There seems to be
A cloud carrying me
To a place so distant from here.
Ai, I really have no desire to return,
And perhaps that is what they call


~  Xu Zhimo  ~







Where is She

She isn’t here.
Where is she?
She stays in the shine bright
of clouds white.
Stays in the moon crescent,
distant and quiescent.
She stays in the lotus of the valley
ever open timidly.
Stays in the flower that reveals
from inside the lotus seed.
She stays in the adolescent heart
where prayers are sent forth.
Stays in its naive artlessness.
She isn’t here.
She is in the quintessence of Nature.

~ Xu Zhimo  ~

quanji, Poetry, Vol. I

News from the Celestial Kingdom  

Lovely Autumn scene! Silent leaves fallen
gently, gently, dropping on this narrow path.
Within the fence, a whisper of tiny kids’ laughter.
Clear sizzling sound the quietude of huts surround,
as if birds in the valley receiving the morning happily,
driving away stale stagnation of the night,
beginning, the unbounded brightness.
A momental ecstasy surges like the epiphyllum,
My momental open, I forget my love for Spring.
The fear, doubt and anguish of life, melancholy and hurry -
I have the vision of the Celestial Kingdom amidst
the innocent kids’ laughter!    

~  Xu Zhimo  ~


Chance   I am a cloud in the sky,
A chance shadow on the wave of your heart.
Don't be surprised,
Or too elated;
In an instant I shall vanish without trace.

We meet on the sea of dark night,
You on your way, I on mine.
Remember if you will,
Or, better still, forget
The light exchanged in this encounter.

~  Xu Zhimo  ~          




The Dew on Grass   O Poet! How can springtime, that
Already has reached out to other men,
Still not release your
Fountains of creative energy
  Laugh, laugh aloud!
The mountain ranges north and south have not yet
Spat out all their jewels,
Nor the oceans East and West sprinkled in all their pearls
Soft, soft the sound of pipes, of strings,
Drink deep the light of stars, sun, moon!
  O Poet! How can springtime, that
Already has reached out to other men,
Still not release your
Fountains of creative energy
  In your oven, there is imagination
And the everlasting flame of inspiration
Refining poetry and charming music
  ~  Xu Zhimo  ~
(translated by Zhenyi Li)


Carolyn Rong ~ Spiritual- Friends    

The Weak Flame of a Star

I sit alone on a rock on the mountain's back,
Staring at the clouds moving pass a summit,
Just then, a sparrow flew pass,
Mocking my lost soul.

One by one, the white clouds set off to heaven,
Vanishing into the distant oasis;
Woe is me! My heavy heart,
Destined to be filled with fogs of sorrow.

Daylight sets in,
Cleansing the island like summit;
Like the specks of light among the dusts,
A glowing star burns within me.

Though, as weak as the flame of the star may be,
It lights up the ashes of the old and forgotten,
No matter what ridicule there may be,
The glow burns ever brighter as time goes by.

by Xu Zhimo  ~

Panhala ~ Joe Riley 

Letting Go

At the end
things pass away
into a hard won perspective.
The sepia photographs
of childhood
like twilight encounters
with eternity
and the youthful
laughter peeling
across a mountainside.
Standing close together
we make our vows
in front of others
with a backward
kind of courage
that everything
away no matter
how precious
the memory
and that
even in this
we recognize
the flourish
and the firm
signature of love.
Everything we ever
held in our hands
is given to another
or slips like sand
through the gate
of our fingers
into something
which to begin with
we cannot recognize.
Everything we ever
held in our hands
is given away
in marriage to another
person or another world.
How could we know
the blessings
which illuminated our days?
The joy too strong to feel
until it was
no longer there to disturb us.
We find ourselves
always at last
ennobled by the encounter
the wedding vows
remembered at the end
and cherished now
like a  live hand
holding a dead hand
loving everything it must let go.
~ David Whyte ~

(Everything is Waiting for You)

This is a Coward World    

This is a coward world:
With no room for love,
No room for love!
Let your hair down,
Kick off your shoes;
Come with me, my beloved.
Reject this world
And die for love.

I'll take your hand.
Love, come with me;
The thorns may piece our feet,
The hail may break our heads,
Come with me,
I'll take your hand,
Beyond this cage
Freedowm will be ours again.

Come with me,
My love!
The world is now behind us---
Look, is that not the white and shining sea?
The white sea,
The shining sea,
Boundless freedom
Of our love!

In the distance where I point,
In the blue of that small star---
An island, and on that island grass,
Flowers, birds and beasts.
Climb aboards this little skiff,
Row towards that paradise---
Love, joy, freedom---
Bid this world farewell,
For evermore! 

~  Xu Zhimo  ~



I gaze at the evening outside my window,
like a longing for my future.
The quake in my heart blinds my hearing.

~  Xu Zhimo  ~      

(Excerpted from "I Wait for You")


Editor's Note: A thank you to Carolyn Rong from Spiritual-Friends for

the introduction to the fine Chinese poet Xu Zhimo.

More of his poetry is available in English translations online, including:  

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Nonduality: The Varieties of Expression Home

Jerry Katz
photography & writings

The wind carves shapes into the beach sand

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