ZEN POEMS:”Paper windows bamboo walls hedge of hibiscus” (about contentment)

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“Paper windows bamboo walls hedge of hibiscus”

 

Paper windows bamboo walls hedge of hibiscus
when guests arrive wormwood soup serves as tea
the poor people I meet are mostly content
rare is the rich man who isn’t vain or wasteful
I move my bookstand to read sutras by moonlight
I honor the buddhas with a vase of wild flowers
everyone says Tushita* Heaven is fine
but how can it match this old hut of mine

by Shiwu (Stonehouse)

English version by Red Pine
Original Language Chinese

from The Zen Works of Stonehouse: Poems and Talks of a 14th Century Chinese Hermit, Translated by Red Pine

*Tushita or Tusita (meaning “realm, contentment”)

 

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