Poetry


How To Get What You Want?


Want to stop being foolish?
Then examine everything carefully. 

Want Dhammic religion? 
Then be tolerant and patient. 

Want to realize the fruits of the path? 
Then don't create any
self. 

Want to be happy everywhere?
Then share, aid, and support others.

Want to honor your parents? 
Don't abandon the family's duties. 

Want to be rich in goodness? 
Don't do anything obsessively. 

Want not to waste this human birth? 
Then know how to be truly human. 

Want to be cool?
Then bathe in the Dhamma.

Want to finish off karmic retribution? 
Must have no
me or mine left. 

Not want any suffering to remain? 
Must make it all free-void-empty.

Want to finish it once and for all? 
Must realize remainderless quenching. 

Want happiness without any pain?
Must Nibbanam paramam sukham.*

❖      

(*) Nibbanam paramam sukham means Nibbana is the supreme happiness.

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Remembering The Hornbill


Chatty Lord Hornbill ... kruk ... krik ...
pecking my back as if to scratch it.

All the times you threw my sandals around
playing, dragging, shoving them about like a tractor.

Now you've died, gone and left us
after landing on a high power transformer.

One foot burnt to a crisp, your last breath
no peacock's screech could compare.

The hearts of everyone who knew you
skipped a beat when they got the news.

No matter how or where, whoever dies
having lived virtuously can't really sadden anyone.

❖      

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 The Highest Life


Any physical action, spoken word, or thought
ought to be done with a crystal clear mind 
that doesn't regard anything as
this or that  
no longer made nasty and dangerous by clinging. 

Whichever
Me or Mine arises, can't you see
they're just the concoctions of sankhara
Claiming things to be
Self is criminal, in other words, 
a clever, shameless, con-job to defraud Nature. 

Whoever stubbornly insists on such a life
falls into a daylong hell of thick, foul smoke, 
with putrid fumes even more extreme at night, 
till cremation ends him having never known any coolness. 

Think
speak act with a clarified heart 
made bright, pure, calm, and smart through discovering 
that anything can be conquered through Dhamma.
Oh, human friends, this sort of life is the highest. 

❖      

Don't Mess Up


Brother, what good do you see in me?
Little brother, who can know the heart of another!

So why do we become intimate & love each other?
It's much more peaceful & easy than hating each other!

Brother, what do you want me to do?
Just don't mess anything up!

Is that enough for you to stand by me?
Well, if there's no dukkha, what more do you want!

Are you implying that I still suffer dukkha?
If you desire fame, status, or acceptance, there's dukkha for sure!

So if we aim for what is lowly happiness is assured?
All I'm asking is that you don't mess up; figure out the rest!

❖      

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Tiger Becomes Kitty


These kids of the Tathagata* are tigers!
Ferociously pouncing on the Path-Fruit** prey.

Living the wilderness of meditation as he taught,
Sorting out the branches of Satipatthana.***

Body, feeling, minds, and Dhamma —
These four are the territories in which tigers

Circle, stalk, and catch their prey,
Clutched securely in the paws of mindfulness.

Any tiger that gets sloppy with Satipatthana
Becomes a house cat, haven't you seen.

The kittified tiger is gossipped all over,
Once the good name of
“tiger is lost in distractions.

❖      

(*) Tathagata : "One Thus Gone," the Buddha. "Children of the Tathagata" traditionally refers to ordained monks and nuns.
(**) Path-Fruit : the moments of consciousness that through penetrating insight into the nature of reality cut through the inborn and accumulated accretions of egoism (path) and experience the resulting joy or peace and liberation (fruit).
(***) Satipatthana : the applications of mindfulness (listed in next stanza) which are the frames of reference for Buddhist meditation practice.

You Must Like My Friend Too


If you like me, you must like my friend, too; 
he helps to keep me happy and refreshed.

He's been a comrade in birth, aging, illness, and death; 
regard him as a worthy companion along the path.

In these long-lasting spinning cycles of Samsara, 
before we reach Sivalaya* revealing the dawn

Of voidness realized in a heart thoroughly freed 
by finally letting go of every last thing.

We humans knowing so much have long-lasting desires; 
animals are more calm and joyful — how amusing.

Whenever we finally reach
The End,
we'll have traveled and finished the path together!

❖      

(*) Sivalaya: Coolness, a traditional synonym for Nibbana, sometimes referred to metaphorically as a place.

Why Revile Them?


Please tell me, why do you love to curse them?
What? I don't like cursing anybody at all!

Then why do all your words pierce the heart?
How can they pierce if the heart is good?

They rumor that you scold magnificently & loudly.
Only dirty minded souls think such a thing!

Well, it hurts and penetrates their hearts.
Those who eat lime will always get heartburn!

If you don't like to, why stir up such resentment?
They're in hopeless trouble already, so I strike!

Can't you hold back just a bit, can't you wait?
When else do you beat iron but when it's still soft!

❖      

Shamed By Kittens


Born, we're afraid to die, so shamed by kittens, 
whose lively eyes sparkle with joyful peace,
never thinking foolishly like us, who tremble 
day and night struggling to insure against death.

The more we think, the more we suffer and imbed fear, 
compounding our suffering with layers of confusion.
Getting older, we worry even more, drafting friends 
and cronies to pray against death, yet keeping our fear.

How to conquer death never crosses such minds, 
carrying on mindlessly, a silly sight to behold, 
being Buddhist yet clutching at their “selves,”
 
hearts quaking in dread of death — shamed by kittens.

❖      

Discussing Dhamma


Well, Brother, do you have any Dhamma to discuss?
Babbling all the time, lil' bro', you'll go crazy!

For what reasons do you say such a thing?
Dhamma is here to be practiced!

If we don't study, then how can we practice?
Infatuated with studies you'll only get stuck!

Shouldn't we ask questions according to our doubts?
You think an obsessive questioner can grasp the Dhamma!

You mean discussions and debates are worthless?
Merely the celebrations of those who boast until dawn!

How then can we appreciate Dhamma's profundity?
Catch all the angles and tricks of dukkha every time!

❖      

I Love Father


I love Dad because he likes to fool around —
He tickles, hugs, and wrestles with me.

I love Dad because he always talks fun
And holds me tight every time we take a walk.

I love Dad for the gentle way he kisses my cheek;
It's funny, sometimes, how my tears flow.

Smiling tears, happy and satisfied without a care
Make me love him even more than before.

Little son, Father once clung & grasped just like that
But one day you will end up balling out your eyes,

Because strong love when separated is hard to bear
Think it over again, son, and set yourself right.

❖      

Bigger Than A Mountain


What can we do to be bigger than a mountain?
Oh, do it just by killing off craving!

Is it a matter of the mind or of wisdom?
Oh, they both have to work together surely!

Regarding the mind, what is its duty?
Oh, use its mighty strength bigger than a mountain!

And how about the duty of wisdom?
It slices right through like lightening!

How are they able to combine their power?
Oh, they make a sword both heavy and sharp!

And for what reason are we bigger than mountains?
With craving destroyed and poison removed, mind is boundless. 

❖      

Hey, It Can Change!


Whatever must be done, do it joyfully,
No need for even a hair's breath of suffering.
Why foolishly gnaw on life like an old bone, 
Making human birth nothing but misery!

Incompetent at adjusting one's mind to the facts,
Making life torture and assassinating the joy
One ought to find every moment everywhere.
Roasting oneself to a crisp — what fun is that?

Come on folks, give this some intelligent thought:
This human birth, in what way is it any good?
It ought to be good at freedom from suffering — 
Suffering itself will never amount to anything of value.

     

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