Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Here, where nothing is worth anything


.
.
Here, where nothing is worth anything,
I've set up a grass-thatched hut.
After eating,
I just stretch out for a nap.
.
As soon as it was built,
weeds were already growing back.
Now I've been here awhile
its covered in vines.
.
So the one in this hut just lives on,
unstuck,
not inside, out, in between.
.
The places where usual folk live,
I don't.
What they want,
I don't.
.
This tiny hut holds the total world,
an old man and
the radiance of forms and their nature,
all in ten feet square.
.
Bodhisattvas of the Vast Path
know about this but
the mediocre and marginal wonder,
"Isn't such a place too fragile to live in?"
.
Fragile or not,
the true master dwells here
where there is no
south or north, east or west.
.
Just sitting here,
it can't be surpassed:
below the green pines
a lit window.
.
Palaces and towers
of jade and vermilion
can't compare.
.
Just sitting,
my head covered,
all things rest.
.
So this mountain monk
has no understanding at all,
just lives on
without struggling to get loose.
.
Not going to
set out seats
and wait for guests.
.
Turning the light
to shine within,
turn it around again.
.
Vast,
unthinkable,
you can't face it
or turn away from it.
.
The root of it.
.
Meet the Awakened Ancestors,
become intimate with the teachings,
lash grass into thatch for a hut
and don't tire so easily.
.
Let it go,
release,
and your life of a hundred years
vanishes.
.
Open your hands.
.
Walk around.
.
Innocence.
.
The swarm of words,
and little stories
are just to loosen you
from where you are stuck.
.
If you want to know
the one in the hermitage
who never dies,
you can't avoid this skin-bag
right here.
.
~  Shitou Xiqian
.

0 comments: