Translated by C.W. Watson
The Foot of the Temple
the base of this wall is full of unfinished carvings
or perhaps they were deliberately left like that by the craftsman
so that in due course time would complete them
the lotus flowers crowd the pool
a countenance of mercy quietly meditates at the edges
the king calmly silent in the shadow of the moonlight
how should we understand this
inscription worn away each day
some of the letters gone
some of the scrolling missing
there is only a boat without a sail firmly attached there motionless
in the wrapping of moss with its place in the wall
waiting for me to sail into the past
where everything begins to crumble as it ages in time
but there is no carving of a lion or a dragon
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