Zen Turranos

I used the form of Eros Turranos by Edwin Arlington Robinson for this composition.

You pick a flower from the wall
To set your meditation,
And shuffle down the sunset hall
Returning to your station;
The slight observer of your mind
Meanders through what lays behind
The curtain keeping present time
Apart from rumination.

You sit on padding from the East
In poses of the Buddha;
You summon stillness to the feast
To chum like barracuda.
In spite of how the world looks,
Or how your mental trappings work,
You cling to theories found in books
On loan from Mr. Dooduh.

The sound of chanting Buddhist monks
Emitting from a speaker,
Fills your ears and you get drunk--
Libations scant and meager.
You seek to get your thoughts in sync,
To have control of what you think,
And power is a tempting drink--
For it you are so eager.

An idol looking so sublime
With empty eyes will catch you,
Descending into present time
Where images fly at you—
Like spirits flocking to their graves,
Or darting out like bats in caves,
The thoughts will come and go in waves
Cuz' all the time they have to.

The incense burning in the room
moves slowly to your nostrils;
You're past the point of joy, or gloom,
Or bliss, or feeling hostile--
You plunge into the deepest depths,
You meet the now with every breath,
Assuage the fear of life and death--
Your mind contains a gospel.

You hear a din, a buzz, a hum:
The voices of a nation;
Collectively they are the sum
Of all thoughts in creation--
Some say to quit the gig and pray,
While others claim you've won the day,
But you will always seek the way--
And not the destination.

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