“To learn how to die . . .”

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To learn how to die

observe the sun-shot seed crown

of a dandelion

In The Poetry of Zen, Sam Hamill translates an anonymous Japanese poem from the early 18th century: “To learn how to die,/ watch cherry blossoms, observe / chrysanthemums.”

Becoming a part of this tradition in so far as an Anglo-phone poet may do so is one of the great joys.

 

 

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