Poems From The Heartwood

Haiku and  Free-Form Poetry From John and The Becoming Buddha Cross River Meditation Center Sangha

(Click On Title)

 

My Friend Sid

True Refuge

Ig-Noble Truths

Tough (Self)-Love

Four

Personal Space

Becoming (Awakened

Bahiya

Something Horrible, Something Wonderful

The Archer

The Forest

Triple Haiku By The Eights

Finger Pointing

Understanding

Robes Just So

110 / 207 Harrison

Haiku By The Numbers

Desire – 2 Views – Only 1 Right

Untitled

The Nature Of Ignorance

Not Self?

Come-And-See

Clinging To Nothing

Mama(’s) Smells

Gus the wise(?)

The Refuge Of The Three Jewels

Hindrance Calmed

A Hindrance Known

American Pies

 

My Friend Sid

From the Suttas my friend Sid arrived.
It was an auspicious arrival.
You see, I was quite lost, at the time.

Clinging to false dharmas,
No path to the Truth.
Sid said “Look here, not there.”

Where, Sid, Where?”
“Right Here. Right View is Right Here.”
True friends are very rare.

John Haspel

True Refuge

I asked my dad
One day
Why people hurt each other.

With his usual smile, he told me not to worry.
He told me he would take care of me.
Now I’m truly lost.

Dad’s not always here,
But people are.

I asked Sid the same question.
He told me not to worry.
He told me the Buddha, His Dhamma, and a well-informed sangha would always be my refuge.

People are always here,
True Refuge, Too.

Thanks for your care, dad,
Thanks for your wisdom, Sid.
Now I know – NO WORRIES!

John Haspel, Inspired By The Dhajagga Sutta

Ig-Noble Truths

They wanted the Truth
Guru said: You are still broken.
Sadly, no truth here

John Haspel. Inspired By The  Ariyapariyesana Sutta

 

Tough (Self)-Love

IT’S COMING MY WAY!!!!
Have I lost MY mind, again?
What Is The Matter?

IT’S COMING MY WAY!!!!
Well, are the six EVER safe?
Heart Of The Matter (period)

John Haspel, Inspired by the Dhatu-Vibhanga Sutta

Four

Confused by passions
Seek Four Noble Truths, just Four
Once realized, calm, cool

John Haspel

Personal Space

Clinging Aggregates.
Fidelity To The Path.
Unbound, Five Remain.

John Haspel

Becoming (Awakened)

What have I become?
Well, there can be only six.
Nothing Personal!

John Haspel, A six-properties Person
inspired by the Dhatu-Vibhanga Sutta

Bahiya

Bahiya, impatient
He taught him: Not here or there
Bahiya, liberated

John Haspel

Something Horrible, Something Wonderful

I saw something horrible today. A human being did not know
the cause of their distress.
Why not seek the truths, I thought,
instead of fleeting prase and foolish baubles.
I saw something wonderful today. A human being did not know
the cause of their distress.
Should I tell them? Can they hear?
Praise and baubles quickly fade.

John Haspel

 

The Archer

Siddharta teaches:
One foot in Jhana, the other in Sati
Practice, Archer, practice!
Intent aims the bow,
Virtue steadies it, clears the eye
Practice, Archer, practice!
Effort draws the bow, time and again
Practice, Archer, practice!
The Target in View, just down the Path
Practice, Archer, practice!
 
Ram Manders
 
 
 
 

The Forest

The forest
By design
Does not
Utter a word

For in its silence
There resides
A stillness
that reaches out

beyond It’s highest Limb
To the end of the universe
And to the depth of man

Michael Murphy

Triple Haiku By The Eights

There are Eight, only Eight.
Fools want more, Eight is not enough
There are Eight, only Eight.
~
There are Eight, only Eight.
Fools want less, Eight is too many.
There are Eight, only Eight.
~
There are Eight, only Eight.
The wise released, From more or less
There are Eight, only Eight.

John Haspel, No More, No Less

Finger Pointing

Finger pointing at the moon.
Chanting the one true chant.
Interdependent, Interconnected, Inter-being?
Lineage, Empowerments, Worshipping all the Buddha-Gods?
All things are one, all things are empty?
Is nothingness the goal?
The greater or the lesser path? Perhaps a Middle Way?
Within ignorance, Four Noble Truths emerge.

John Haspel, Not Greater or Lesser

Understanding

A thicket of views
Siddartha disentangled
Now see kind truth. Peace

Rebecca Puglia

Robes Just So

His robes conveyed a gentle authority.
Jacket and tie did too, at times.
His words, hope.
Fabricated dharmas, crazy, consumed by unattended desire.
No wisdom or true compassion here
His actions could only destroy.
Fabricated dharmas, too.

John Haspel

110 / 207 Harrison

Unused for many years.
The Dhamma arrived
Others shortly after
Confused and distracted then,
Well-concentrated, wise and at peace.  Now!

John Haspel

Haiku By The Numbers

One. Two. Sixty-four.
Sixty-five? There is more to
life than numbers, no?

John Haspel, age 64

Desire – 2 Views – Only 1 Right

After so many years, so many years,
I finally got it.
What, you ask?
More! More!!

More was all mine
And then… more was gone!
Me too…

After so many years, so many years,
I finally got it.
What, you ask?
Less. Much less.

Wise restraint is mine,
Gone no more.
A mind at Peace.

John Haspel

Untitled

Watch him
As he goes
With
Delight in his eyes

Only to
Be replaced
By sadness
In his eyes

Watch him
As he enters
the fray
Of yet Another

Lost day
He laugh
He cries
Is born again

And dies
And does so
A thousand
Times a thousand

Times
Until
His eyes
Open

For unless
His eyes
Open
He will

Forever
Be lost
Forever
Craving

That
Which
Does not exist
A place

To call
His own
In this
Forever

Changing
World
And who
Is this that

We see
Who is this poor soul
Who struggles so
To and fro

As he goes?
Is it anyone
That
I know?

I don’t think so
So then
Tell me
What you

Already know
He who
You see
Is you
And me

Michael Murphy

The Nature Of Ignorance

Round and Round. It seems I’m stuck. In Me!
Here, and there. There, and here.
I don’t know who or where I am

But, everywhere, everywhere,
everywhere I look, It’s me, again.
Why can’t I ever escape: Me?

Why am I always here, …  and there?
What?
Don’t I know?

What don’t I know…
I don’t know that I don’t know!
I don’t know what I don’t know?

I know that I know that I know!
I don’t know that I don’t know what don’t know!
I think…

A feedback loop? Knowing everything yet knowing nothing!?
Can THIS be real? Can THIS be possible!?
Can I not know whatI don’t know?

Can I not know that I don’t know what I don’t know?
Not not-knowing? Nagrarjuna did not know, how can I?
Whta’s the truth? I heard (once) there are Four.

When will I know what I know?
When will I know that I know?
When will I know that I don’t know what I don’t know?

I know, I know… (I said, not knowing)

John Haspel, Inspired by the Nagara Sutta

Not Self?

There are only six!
Wait! Why does six desire more?
From not knowing six…

John Haspel, Inspired by the Dhatu-Vibhanga Sutta

Come-And-See

A 12-link Pain-chain
An Eightfold Path of Freedom
Ehipassiko, friends

John Haspel, traditional haiku

Clinging To Nothing

Confused by his feelings and thoughts,
Siddartha left his father, the King
Wandering here and there,

Teachers taught, Friends were friendly.
Teachers and friends were wrong.

Stuck in wrong views rooted in ignorance. No Way Out?
Finally he found that feelings are feelings, thoughts are thoughts,
and are always fleeting.

Seeing clearly, he could find no self, nothing to call “mine.”
Released from wrong views, Seeing clearly,
Siddartha could find no-thing to cling a self to.

Knowing Four Truths, only Four, feelings and thoughts
arise and pass away.

Peace.

John Haspel. Inspired By The  Ariyapariyesana Sutta

Mama(’s) Smells

Mama(’s) smells. Cooking smells, I mean.
Eggplant Parm, Apple Pie, Roast Beef, Sunday Gravy!
How a smell brings remembrance
How a smell brings comfort.
Long gone, her cooking still smells.
Thanks, mom.

John Haspel

Gus the wise(?)

He was next to another when we first saw him, Moira and me.
Gus was sitting tall, snoot up, posing, tail wagging.
The other seemed disinterested.

But not Gus.
Gus was a greasy wheel posing sharply for notice.
We noticed, Gus became Bodhi

A wonderful dog and fair Dhamma teacher, indeed!

John Haspel

The Refuge of the Three Jewels

 
Woodland groves
In the heat of Summer
Crowned with blossoming flowers
Just as the Dhamma’s efflorescence leads to Nirvana
Come
Summon peace within
Radiate benevolence
The Tathagata has gone forth
Without ignorance
Without distraction
Freed
An offering
Of Wisdom.
Take refuge in him
Hold steadfast the treasure offered
Within your heart
Within your mind
Upon your lips
The deathless state can be attained.
Assemble amongst yourselves
Grow
Strengthen
Abandon
A future that may not be as you see
Allow life to unfold

And let each day find its way.

Julia Gatti

Hindrance Calmed

Uncertainty is…
impermanence now, now, now

now, just let it be.

Rebecca Puglia

 

A Hindrance Known

Uncertainty is…
impermanence now, now. Know…
it’s impermanent
.
Rebecca Puglia
 

American Pies

Jimmy, Janis, Freddy, Jim, and John, Elvis, too
What a difference they could have made.
Abraham, Jack, Bobby, Martin, my friend, Charles.
What a difference they could have made.
All long gone, some would say too soon.

The lrvee is dry.

Who’s here now?

John Haspel

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For All Who Reside In The Dhamma - Agantuka Sutta

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Sources

My Dhamma articles and talks are based on the Buddha's teachings  (suttas) as preserved in the Sutta Pitaka, the second book of the Pali Canon. I have relied primarily on Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s excellent and insightful translation of the Pali generously made freely available at his website Dhammatalks.org, as well as the works of Acharya Buddharakkhita, Nyanaponika Thera, John Ireland, Maurice Walsh, Hellmuth Hecker, and Sister Khema, among others, as preserved at Access To Insight.

Also, I have found Bhikkhu Bodhi's translations from Wisdom Publications Pali Canon Anthologies to be most informative and an excellent resource.

I have made edits to the suttas from these sources for further clarity, to modernize language, to minimize repetition, and maintain contextual relevance to Dependent Origination and Four Noble Truths.


Becoming-Buddha.com and Dhamma articles and recordings by John Haspel are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Peace

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