Once through, contentment.

Once through, ripe seeing.

Once through, words are nothing
but falling blossoms
and mud on your shoe.

Once through,
the breeze through the leaves -- a symphony;
dinner in your bowl -- the broth of the sea.

Once through,
there is nothing
to fall back on
for explanation
except a soft gaze
a hello
an embrace
a goodbye.

If you open your mouth
a hungry lioness
will eat your heart
and 108 dragon ancestors
will burn out your tongue.

Not stepping through --
no option at all.

(c) 2017 / Frank LaRue Owen / purelandpoetry.com

To learn more about the contemplative music of Hiroki Okano, visit his site.

This poem appears in The School of Soft-Attention, now available for order from Homebound Publications or Amazon.com