Poems from Nikkō

I’ve been meaning to post these for more than a month already, but things kept happening.  I wrote this one after escaping from the main shrine/temple complex to a secluded bit of forest.

Red tipped with gold and crossed with turquoise bands,
Out twists a dragon, here,
And there, a snarling demon or a duck?

If all seems startlingly familiar,
As in a dream, in this
Exuberant parade of fleeting images —

(Each one I try to capture sweeps away,
A twirling dragonfly,
To yield to others heavying the air —

A hundred leaps and darts, and all in vain —
Exhausted, I
Stare blankly as an ant crawls down a mossy wall)

So is familiar what outshines the rest,
Spreads clarity throughout,
As though a bud whence blossoms an Idea:

So nearly missed among the gaudy gaggle,
A little sleeping cat,

Then I looked around and all I needed to say was

The cicadas are
(when it is their turn to sing)
louder than the stream.

More photos, well, eventually.  For now,

The sleeping cat in Nikkō
This is what I’m talking about.

One Response to “Poems from Nikkō”

  1. My Says:

    Beautiful poem, Fedya!

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