Undertow

Posted by on June 3, 2016

Empty Waves Zhong Fen li Bao yu Di, ©2016

Submerged in the rippling water,

My toes gently sink into the sand.

I step into the next wave,

And feel a strong pull as it recedes.

A riptide can be dangerous,

But it is I who make it so.

My fear of disappearing,

Of leaving all behind,

Keeps me from the joy of the deep water.

I cling to the shoreline,

To what I imagine it offers.

Let me possess the calm and faith

To go instead with what I know.

To go out willingly with the riptide,

To swim in the swells of deep waters.

Zhong Fen li Bao yu Di 2016

Comment on “Undertow”

During a recent retreat, I asked my teacher for help in understanding what emptiness is. She requested that I write about it, which I did. Then she sent me this.

” The experience of emptiness is enlightenment..to want nothing..to know nothing..have nothing. Completely empty even words cannot express. All hindrances are gone.”

I wrote back that I did not understand, but would reflect upon her words. I stopped trying to understand the words. Instead, I tried to “feel” my response to them. In doing so, I recalled vacationing in the Outer Banks as a young man…the feeling of swimming in the ocean…being on the edge of rip tides…of swimming in very deep waters. Her words about emptiness brought back many feelings associated with those experiences. I then wrote this poem.

Zhong Fen li Bao yu Di
June 3, 2016

 

 

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