Why I Walk

(Abhayagiri Monastery)

The trail uphill past the bell-tower
through the madrone and manzanita scrub

four-wheel drives can climb it
but today isn't about getting there

or getting the work over and done with...
sure it's not easy to live without achievement

and keep heading uphill
but it carries a because

that maybe the deer would pick up
with those ears that swivel like sails

or the black bear would sniff and claw out
as something luscious, full of grubs

and maybe the bell that was a bomb-case
could ring it out, now that it too is empty -

how we can be lifted out of our story,
with each step, each breath, one at a time

that draws purely from what is given
and wrapped in brief flowers and earth-music

today that sense is resounding
among the ladders, pulleys and precarious scaffolding

of who we say we are. That lost cause.
And I need no sky or crumbling valley.

From: Travels in the Middle Land, Dhamma Moon, 2013.

Posted: Tue 17 Nov, 2009