Three Good
Places
1.

A winding thread of silver road ascends upon a breeze
To terraced gardens where, softly, upon pale-pebbled paths,
a barefoot monk is walking.

He pauses beneath a blossoming peach tree,
Pondering the fallen petals,
And quaffs peach nectar from a golden horn.

Somewhere in the distance frogs are chanting.
Above their soft antiphony floats a melody of silver bells.

Now on bended knee he tills the soil, redolent of dead flowers.
Over and over he is turning the fallen petals in his mind...


2.

You wander in a golden glade in the morning;
Before you beckons the pine scent and the woodpecker.

At the forest's edge you come upon an old stone cottage.
Sunlight streaks the wrinkled stone,
Bleached by years of summers' fire.
Hot dust dances about the door,
Memories of children's laughter hide within, among the shadows.

Two hares are chasing one another to and fro;
A worm descends the air upon a thread.
Slowly turns the worm upon his silver thread...


3.

I am standing at a station
In a high and quiet country where train tracks weave among the grassy hills.
Into noon's blue stillness sounds a horn:
A train is coming!
Children gather in expectation.
A train, bearing unguessable gifts
And conjuring a journey in my mind
to other goodly places.

Are these dreams' deep recollections
Or visions of a future bliss?
Or but this time, this room,
Your hair become the golden field,
Your breath, the aromatic breeze,
Become all time, all places, everlasting,
Through love's miracle?