What You Aught

I don’t know if you love me or if not,

So tell me if you love or hate me please. 

I beg of you to do that which you aught

And even if it takes me to my knees,

At least I’ll know the truth of how you feel

And maybe I’ll be able to move on.

So tell me please and turn my heart to steel,

For you must hate me. Fly me like a swan. 

I guess it’s true that necessarily,

You don’t have to only love or hate,

But tell me, pray you, how you feel toward me

And lead me toward my destiny and fate. 

Alas, I don’t know how our story ends,

But I will learn to be content as friends.

Putting Off Sukhavati

I’m choosing not to reach nirvana at the end of life. 

This very life, that is, because I want to live again. 

Depression and anxiety and never ending strife:

These are the marks of suffering of women and of men,

But your life never had a bit of bliss.

I never did deserve you. You deserved much more than me. 

I don’t know whether I can love again, though, after you. 

I hope that in your next life you will be completely free,

But you are in samsara still, so that’s where I’ll be too. 

To say I like it though would be remiss.

Amida Buddha, Dharmakara, saves me everyday,

But now I have to ask him not to bring me into bliss. 

And what can I do that will keep enlightenment at bay?

So I can live again, and meet you with a bit of this:

A life that we will live in joyous bliss.

So Dharmakara, pray you, let me live another time,

And even more and more until I meet my love again. 

I want to live one day in bliss, but would it be a crime,

To put aside a life in Sukhavati, find my Zen,

And find the one who is my joyous bliss.

My love, although you’ve passed away you’re still alive somewhere,

And I will roam samsara till I find you and your love. 

To choose to stay within samsara may just be to err,

But I believe my reason is ordained by those above,

And that is finding one who is my bliss.

Risking Wrath

When Frost went down the path less traveled by,

He chose a path just like the other one,

But these two paths which swear to deify,

Are not the same when all is walked and done.

The paths at which I stand are not the same,

And both do not lie equal on this day,

For one is easy, straight but narrow claim.

The other’s rocky; take the rocks away.

But if you make the rocks and rifts be gone, 

The path would not lead to a paradise.

The easy path leads to a heaven’s dawn

Without the need for rocky sacrifice.

I wouldn’t  make it down the rocky path

So I’ll go down what’s easy, risking wrath.


The trees are made of squares. The water is rectangular. 

The sun shines down on us with light that is triangular.

Reflecting off the lake in angles and geometries,

The light reminds us of our own collective histories. 

They told us nature doesn’t have straight lines but that’s a lie;

As we resist our past, the lines become our alibi. 

They cause us to forget the things we saw and what we did,

Like when we saw the trapezoids and ran away and hid,

And there we sat in silence, trapped by our geometries,

And there we sat in silence, trapped by their idolatries,

But then the door was opened by a man without a shape,

Though all I saw were squares and lines that left the door agape. 

Though now we’re in this forest park enjoying life outside,

We cannot help but let these shapes and angles be our guide;

But as I sit here and enjoy the angled light on me,

I think I see a bird flying bird, without a shape, go free.

Five Ways Down the Mountainside

I stand upon a mountain top with fire at the base.

Above me is the black expanse of boundless, starry space;

Behind me lies an ocean not of water but of glass

Which borders on a deadly wilderness of poison gas. 

Toward the right lies endless blue of diamonds shining bright,

While on the left is nothing but an orange and yellow light. 

There’s five ways down the mountainside and one way up to space

And I am on the verge of going down each path apace.

An Emergency of Love and Hate

I’m in a corn maze on a blissless autumn day

And having an emergency of love and hate. 

You see, I love this green but hate it anyway

For green will turn to white, and bring my loveless fate. 

So take me out of yellow; place me in a blue,

Then let me fly away and give me deja vu,

For I don’t want this green another second more,

Although I wouldn’t stop if you all told me to. 

I cannot stop. I will not stop. It’s not a chore,

But yes, I want to stop and go into the blue. 

So take this green away from me; make it go,

Then let me free to run away for this I know:

That God is real and doesn’t want me using green. 

I see the exit now. It’s been there all this time,

So I will go that way and finally leave this scene. 

Perhaps I’ll learn to empty, or I’ll learn to rhyme. 

Perhaps I’ll learn to make me into something great,

But either way I know, no longer do I hate.

Buddhists in Space

Upon a ship in space there is a Buddhist sitting down. 

Upon a meditation mat, his face is in a frown. 

He knows the world he left behind is now the Buddha’s land;

It’s filled with yellow lotus flowers and a purple sand

Which borders on the ocean made of water and of glass

And all the land is covered in a golden kind of grass. 

The man laments the exodus of which he was a part,

Although he had no choice upon the exodus’s start. 

So now the Buddhists ride upon this ship toward the sun

Believing that it will be good when all is said and done. 

The aforementioned man, however, doesn’t think it so,

For he would rather dwell with all the buddhas down below

And so he rises out of meditation and stands up

And puts a drop of poison nectar in the captain’s cup. 

He takes the cup up to the captain and he makes her drink. 

It was a dreadful death she died as they were on the brink. 

The man then grabbed the captain’s wheel and turned the ship around. 

He sailed until they reached the earth and landed on the ground. 

He walked up to the Buddha and he said to him, “Hello,

I couldn’t stand to be away from buddhas here below

And so I took control of this,” he gestured to the ship,

“And brought us faithful back to earth so that you can equip

Us with the knowledge of the world and all we wish to know.”

The Buddha sat in silence with a joyful, yellow glow. 

The man was angry that the Buddha would not speak to him. 

The worshippers got on the ship and it was filled to brim

And headed back upon their way toward the yellow sun. 

They made it there and it was warm. Now all is said and done.

Icarus and I

When Icarus was flying in the sky, 

He fell into the water down below. 

The turn is mine to take up wings and fly;

I will be careful not to fly too high

Or take my wings upon the ground so low. 


The ocean waves are roaring down below. 

This tower rises up above the sea. 

I can’t just fly away from here, I know,

Without the danger of the overflow

Who’s power can erase reality.


Erase my own reality, that is. 

The ocean’s overflow which Icarus

Fell into when the waxy wings on his

Back melted into nothing more than fizz 

May take me too, for I am timorous,


And thus I jump. I take the middle way. 

So, as I fly, I do not fly too low

Or fly too high as I go toward the bay,

Where people run and dance and children play. 

Yet still I fear the water that’s below,


And thus I fly, and find I start to drift,

For fear of water’s leading me astray,

And soon I’ll be upon the sea adrift.

Inside me something big begins to shift

From joy to fear as I cascade away.


When Icarus was flying in the sky,

Excitement brought him up unto the sun

And he began to fly so very high.

So up he went. He knew not how to fly,

And as he fell, he shifted into none,


But I know how to fly, so tell me why,

Do I still fear the water so much so

That I cannot contain myself to fly

Up toward the blue, extraordinary sky.

Now I am falling toward the water’s flow.


It’s fear that’s keeping me from flying high

Enough to reach the so-called middle way,

And yet I did not even choose to fly,

But, rather, I was forced to fly or die,

And now it seems I’ll perish anyway.


Though in the distance now I see the bay,

I know not whether I will make it there,

For though I try to fly the middle way,

I’m falling fast and dying anyway.

Besides, to make it to the bay is rare.


It’s only now that I have realized,

To make it to that perfect, endless bay,

To make it to perfection advertised,

To make it there, that one would be advised,

To ride upon the ocean’s foam and spray,


For only by the power of the deep

Can one begin to make it to the bay,

The place where people laugh, but never weep

Where people all are shepherded like sheep.

And so I ride that spray and never stray.

A Woman Walks

A woman walks upon a path that leads to such a sight:

Beside the river is a set of tracks that don’t shine bright.

The mossy tracks have not been used in very many years,

Yet forward comes a train that’s filled with terror, filled with fears. 

She stands upon the mossy tracks and sees the train is here

And wishes with a mighty wish that she would disappear.

Although the train goes by and the conductor is confused,

It does not touch her, leaving her bewildered and bemused.

Now that the train has gone around the curve and disappeared,

She stands among the trees and wonders why she ever feared.

All The Bodhisattvas of the World

I woke and went outside and saw a scroll upon the sky. 

It said:

The bodhisattvas of the world are all beside you now

And Heaven’s angels fly beside you all to show you how

To make your way across this arduous and rocky trail

Away from hardships toward the one and only Holy Grail.

Then I replied:

I cannot see them so they don’t exist beside me now

And no one here beside me has been known to show me how

To make my way across this difficult and lonely trail

Away from pain and ever closer toward my Holy Grail

The scroll then said:

You may not see them, but they’re there to lead you on your way

In every word and every gesture made in darkness they

Are guiding you to every light and every happiness

To take away your loneliness and all unpleasant stress.

Then I replied:

I still don’t see it. Show me how to see them lead my way

For it is dark and I don’t see the words and gestures they

Are making in the light to lead to every happiness

And all I feel is loneliness and all unpleasant stress. 

The scroll then said:

So look upon your friends and family. Look at what they do,

For they are bodhisattvas and are angels through and through

And all which they are doing is to bring you to the light

And even strangers work for you to bring you out of night.

Then I replied:

I see it now; I think I might. I’m watching what they do

For they are bodhisattvas and are angels through and through.

In every hug and every smile they bring me toward the light

And every gesture made of kindness brings me out of night.

The scroll then said:

You see it now; now watch them fly, for they are next to you.

Now I must go and you will see a sky of white and blue.

My wish for you is that it will remind you of this world

That works for your own happiness. And then the scroll refurled. 

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