even they

even they
9 october, 2014

zen-buddhism-008
With acknowledgements to the Guardian.com for use of this image, credited to Barbara Walton/EPA

he* who had looked
into the heart of the
matter of matter
and its cloud-like
changes
who saw clear the
chain of lives dangling
through time told us
even the gods* pass

fading out across
the sky over thousands
and thousands of years
the gods whose being
was once bright and
impenetrable as an
evening star growing
its light into darkness
whose pleasures and amorous
grasps almost wore away
the face of time itself,
even they pass.

imagine, he said,
the agony of their
dying out, the moment
they feel the first tick of
of their way to the last,
a going out that pains them
in its slowness, so slow the
time they know yet passing,
who had never known weakness,
who could blow out suns,
who could tear our chains
of coming and going apart
on a single thought
imagine the agony
of their passing

and even they
he said will ask
for one drop of the
truth, who sucked in
galaxies of fruit and
wines, even they
shall come to
hear what they
never had.

*Sakyamuni, the Buddha

*the ‘Devas’, who Buddha described as also ‘mortal’

Copyright © 2021 Peter Le Baige. All Rights Reserved

The background for the reading is the sound of a Japanese temple bell (orin) or standing bell, posted on Youtube courtesy of Sound and Silence Resonant Healing.

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