Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Reflections on Li Po - The birds have vanished into the sky

The birds have vanished into the sky,
and now the last cloud drains away.

We sit together, the mountain and me,
until only the mountain remains.

from Endless River: Li Po and Tu Fu: A Friendship in Poetry,
Translated by Sam Hami.

This is so evocative. A truly beautiful image, of Li Po sitting *with* the mountain, together, and in stillness, until only awareness of mountain remains.

It's interesting the sense of time here, as Li Po sits for some time, as the birds fly away, the clouds drain away. Quite some time must pass, and eventually, Li Po's sense of self fades away ....

All the transient appearances are symbolised here (birds and clouds which pass across the sky) as gradually dissolving, until how things actually are (symbolised by the mountain) is seen as it is.

Perhaps more than this metaphor for how things are, what strikes me is the sheer beauty of Li Po's evocation of the process and path, of seeing things as they are ... yet utterly opening to what appears to mind .... relative and ultimate, luminous emptiness ....

1 comment:

MysticSaint said...

this truly is beautiful!