Garden of White Clouds


“We continue, even if it’s evening, even if it’s fall”.

– Chiao Jan


On the way,

It was a pause of light –

A gap between dream and morning.


Long ago (now) –

A negative space veiled Incense burner mountain in a garden of white clouds.

Oceans from sand painted islands of storms,

As a senescence of youths become forever inked into scrolled mountains.


From temples of mist,

Our remaining poems were completed in absences as well as words.

It was the decay of a shakuhachi voice.

It was distant winds sensing stentorian silence,

With spoken sumi-e strokes from a last T’ang poet.


On the way,

It was a pause of light.


Old stone lanterns became lit with dusk –

But we continued,

Even though a path lead nowhere –

Even though Peach blossoms turned to glittered ice –

Even though dry leaves rustled in rouge-tinted hands of autumn stars.