A cloudless sky,
no breath of wind,
I sit beside the courtyard pool.
The slow stirrings of the goldfish,
the radiance and I,
the earth and water—
Life clusters in a fresh washed bunch.
My mother is cleaning sweet basil leaves.
Bread and white cheese, a cloudless sky,
the moist satin of petunia blossoms.
Salvation is near, tucked between the leaves
of the courtyard’s flowers.
Light in a brass bowl
pours out such caresses.
The ladder brings morning down
from the top of the high walls,
and spreads it on the ground.
Behind each thing’s secret smile
there is a small window in time’s encircling wall
through which my face appears.
There are things I do not know,
but if I pluck that sprig
I know that I will die.
I will rise up to the zenith,
wings and feathers sprouting from me.
I see a way in the darkness.
I am a lantern.
I am one with light and sand,
with a forest of trees.
I am the road, the bridge, the river and waves.
The shadow of a leaf on water
fills my endless solitude.