Unmoving, not cultivating goodness, Ebullient, not doing evil, Serene, detached from the senses, Clear, mind without fixation. (Hui-neng’s death poem, according to The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch)


The boundless spring on the hundred plants; Picking up what comes to hand, using it knowingly. The sixteen-foot golden body, a collection of virtuous qualities Casually leading one by the hand into the red dust; Able to be a master in the dusts, From outside creation a guest shows up. Everywhere life is sufficient in […]


With this and that I tried to keep the bucket together, And then the bottom fell out. Where water does not collect, The moon does not dwell. Chiyono is the last name chanted in Zen Center’s list of women ancestors, though she lived in the 13th century. This poem is quoted in The Hidden Lamp, where reference […]

Sunday Poem

Ten years of dreams in the forest! Now on the lake’s edge laughing, Laughing a new laugh.   (from Zenrin Kushu – ‘parallel five-character phrases’ section of koan capping phrases)