IN THE PURELAND OF THE VOLCANOES
The Ten Ox-Herding Verses by 廓庵師遠 Kuoan Shiyuan, [Kakuan Shien], of the 12th century
describes the 十牛圖 Shiniu tu [Jūgyūzu], a series of images called the Ten Oxherding Pictures.
These Ten Ox-Herding Verses describe a young boy searching for his lost ox as a metaphor for seeking enlightenment.
In the tenth and final verse, the young boy has found the ox and has returned home, and a portly stranger is introduced.
Some readings interpret this older figure as the boy from the beginning of the poem:
He enters the city barefoot, with
Covered in dust and ashes,
No need for the magic powers of
the gods and immortals,
Just let the dead tree bloom
—Trans. Gen Sakamoto
When your spirit is tamed
it becomes like the shadow
of the rose-apple tree
that of all of the grove
did not move
the moving sun to flee.
Rest in that shade
It is -
a lion’s roar of Peace.
Leo Rivers / author and webmaster LR - X-Mas 2021
This site is structured as an installation - a simple labyrinth to wander within.
It also serves as an introduction to me and a Portfolio of the current concerns of my poetry.