With Knowing Eyes

    “The one who bows and the one who is bowed to
      are both by nature empty.” 
~Thich Nhat Hanh*
In 7th Century India, at Nalanda University
the 10,000 monks studying Buddhism
must have lived as we live now

exploring all paths to and from
the many and the One, as did the Talmudic
Rebbes of Babylon who in that same century

were singing Jacob’s story of the messengers
joining earth to heaven as they ascended
and descended ladders of light.  Likewise

the body punishing nuns in so many Christ-loving
convents, staring at the centers of their palms
until blood welled.  Or the shamans and witches

starved and dreaming among red hot stones
and glowing sweat lodge embers
on all five continents.  Everywhere

in every age, wise ones among the desperate,
pouring unlimited love through the open hands
they raise to beg and offer food at stone portals,

skin flap entry ways, the well at the breech
in the hills where shepherds gathered,
the great oak in the village square, the stop

light at the entrance to the Freeway.
Even today, those who watch with knowing
eyes can glimpse the Holy Ones continuously

reuniting even while they divide
into the ones who give,
and the ones who receive.
                                                             2/23/2009
  *  https://deerparkmonastery.org/practice/touching-the-earth/

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