Oh god I love you, Spring. Come here and give me a wet sloppy kiss, throw your arms around me and swirl me around in the sunshine! I worry at your early arrival though, pushing winter away with your pushy showiness. Winter rains need to stay a while yet, and it's not been cold enough for the warmth to be so welcomed. There's a 50 percent chance of El Nino here in Australia - we're all holding our breath and daring not to say drought, yet knowing it could come, as it has before.
I want to do with you what Spring does to the cherry trees - Pablo Neruda
In the last few weeks I've started to use my proper camera again. There's something ritualistic about taking it out of it's bag with the intention to capture beauty - a something that doesn't quite come with the phone in your pocket, cyborgian extension of self. The SLR is a hand-me-down of my father's, who, when upgrading to the camera that will make him happy this time, sells it off to us cheap. It's a beautiful Sony with two Zeiss lens and I'm starting to love it. It gives me a sense of mindful attention - breath held, focus on the frame. I'm not an expert and nor will I pretend to be, but on this day and this post, I capture an essence of the day that maybe, in future times, I will look back on and say: ah, that was a day. It was a day.
Spring has its hundred flowers,
Autumn its moon,
Summer has its cooling breezes,
Winter its snow.
If you allow no idle concerns
To weight on your heart,
Your whole life will be one
Perennial good season.
The Golden Age of Zen
Earth, mountains, rivers - hidden in this nothingness.
In this nothingness - earth, mountains, rivers revealed.
Spring flowers, winter snows:
There's no being or non-being, nor denial itself.
When Spring comes it's easy for our attention to touch flowers, bees, the warm breeze, sky with the pelicans and ibis flying over. The cockatoos screech early and I shoo them away like a wild banshee woman, still in dressing gown, bare feet wet on the morning dew of the back deck. I don't want them to settle here - they're magnificent birds, but noisy ones, and make a mess. They can keep their roost in the distant pines, thankyou, distant screeches that say,yes, you are still in Australia, great Southern Land, populated by huge birds with huge calls.
Buddha preached in the twelve divisions,
each division full of purest truth.
East wind -- rain comes in the night,
making all the forest fresh and new.
No sutra that does not save the living,
no branch in the forest not visited by spring.
Learn to understand the meaning in them,
don't try to decide which is "valid," which is not.
Poetry speaks better than I do. It speaks of cycles, and lessons, and reminds me to feel other than this nature around me is to dress myself in man's conceit - that he is separate from this speaking earth, and not beholden to the winter snows, when they come knocking.
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