Poet Jane Hirshfield said "... the feeling I have about poem-writing (is) that it is always an exploration, of discovering something I didn't already know.  Who I am shifts from moment to moment, year to year.  What I can perceive does as well.  A new poem peers into mystery, into whatever lies just beyond the edge of knowable ground."

I bring a different poem to the writing classes each week, not only to inspire but to introduce new poets to the group members.

The night is fresh and cool by Ryokan

The night is fresh and cool—
Staff in hand, I walk through the gate.
Wisteria and ivy grow together along the winding mountain path;
Birds sing quietly in their nests and a monkey howls nearby.
As I reach a high peak a village appears in the distance.
The old pines are full of poems;
I bend down for a drink of pure spring water.
There is a gentle breeze, and the round moon hangs overhead.
Standing by a deserted building,
I pretend to be a crane softly floating among the clouds.
 
(translated from the Japanese by John Stevens)

~ from The Poetry of Impermanence, Mindfulness, and Joy  
Edited by John Brehm (Wisdom Publications, 2017)


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