Visit to Katagiri Roshi

Visit to Katagiri Roshi December 19, 2008
Here’s another blessing poem. This one is from Diane di Prima, quite popular with Katagiri’s students but probably not so well known outside his immediate circle. Diane really captures how it was to hang with the old boy.

A pleasure.
We talk of here & there
gossip about the folks in San Francisco
laugh a lot. I try
to tell him (to tell someone)
what my life is like:
the hungry people, the trying
 to sit zazen in motels;
the need in America like a sponge
 sucking up
whatever prana & courage
“Pray to the Bodhisattvas” sez 
 Katagiri Roshi.

I tell him
that sometimes, travelling, I am
to restless to sit still, wiggle & 
 itch. “Sit
only ten minutes, five minutes
at a time” he sez – first time
it has occurred to me that this 
wd be OK.

As I talk, it becomes OK
there becomes some continuity 
in my life; I even understand
 (or remember)
why I’m on the road.

As we talk a continuity, a
 transfer of energy
takes place.
It is darshan, a blessing,
transmission of some basic joy
some way of seeing.
 in the heart.
It stays with me.
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