Han Shan – The Poet of Cold Mountain
My Comment: Han Shan is one of my favorite poets. He was a hermit living up in the Chinese Mountains. More on Han Shan here. His spirit was dedicated to “leaping the world’s net”, something that resonates particularly with me from time to time, and right now is one of those times. If you sometimes enjoy entering into the clear space of Beingness free of all distractions and adulterations, then you will enjoy these poems.
I’m on the trail to Cold Mountain.
Cold Mountain trail never ends.
Long clefts thick with rock and stones,
Wide streams buried in dense grass.
Slippery moss, but there’s been no rain,
Pine trees sigh, but there’s no wind.
Who can leap the world’s net,
Sit here in the white clouds with me?
Sitting alone by folded rocks,
Mist swirling even at noon,
Here, inside my room, it’s dark.
Mind is bright, clear of sound.
Through the shining gate in dream.
Back by the stone bridge, mind returns.
Where now the things that troubled me?
Wind-blown gourd rattling in the tree.
The everyday mind: that is the way.
Buried in vines and rock-bound caves,
Here it’s wild, here I am free,
Idling with the white clouds, my friends.
Tracks here never reach the world;
No-mind, so what can shift my thought?
I sit the night through on a bed of stone,
While the moon climbs Cold Mountain.
Cold rock, no one takes this road.
The deeper you go, the finer it is.
White clouds hang on high crags.
On Green Peak a lone gibbon’s cry.
What friends do I need?
I do what pleases me, and grow old.
Let face and body alter with the years,
I’ll hold to the bright path of mind.
River of Suchness
Children of the Triple World
don’t do what isn’t right
who falls short is scorned
who goes too far isn’t suffered
all the world’s deluded people
stick together like cooked millet
they don’t see the carefree man
on his own beyond their reach
go back to the source right now
let the Three Worlds rise and fall
swim in the River of Suchness
don’t drink the Water of Darkness
The Sea of Sentient Beings
The great ocean – water without any shore;
Fishes and dragons – ten thousand, ten thousand thousand.
Taking turns, they eat and they chew one another;
All mixed together – one stupid lump of flesh.
Because the mind isn’t completely cut off,
False thoughts arise like smoke.
Your nature is like the moon – pure and clear, it is bright;
Far and wide it shines without end.