Stray Dog

Here I am, a stray dog, growling at strangers and biting the outstretched hand.
Rather starving than cringing.
Free, my burnt pads, disheartened a thousand times,

Tell me : Where else I would have stranded ?
Where else would I have ended, if not on the Zen Shore ?

What friends could I have found but that bunch of long deceased Zen pirates or solitary cabin dwellers ?
Still, I need to run away.
Fake pirates have long berthed.

(Related Post : My Perfect Life)

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7 commentaires

  1. I have wondered about this post.

    The stray dog suggests homelessness. We are all travellers. But fear? Suspicion? Is it the outstretched hands of those fake pirates that are in view? Or just a determination to be free? To be apart from that which clouds the mind and perception?

    You seem to feel an affinity for other strays. I might use other imagery, but I think I understand. The listeners upon the mountain tops, the eagles who spread their wings upon the gale, or the solitary watcher on the stormy cliff edge. Those who see and know the turbulence, and find calm in riding the storm. Such will recognise each other. But such will stand alone. Fiercely so. There is space in every connection they may find.

    And recognise, also, those who pass by with the snares of distraction, however prettily packaged as some bait.

    Perhaps you are where you must be. For now.


    1. This was, as far as I can remember…
      A call for independence and freedom,
      Something in the spirit of LA Fontaine’s fable « Le Chien Et Le Loup. »

      there is a form of accepted wilderness,
      an acceptance of roughness,

      I have this love for ‘cabins’.
      Must I say here, my all-time favourite book is Thoreau’s Walden of A life in the Woods’ ?

      Are you familiar with Ryokan’s reaction when he came back to his forest shelter and realized thieves had taken everything he owned ( a bowl, a few things, a blanket..) ?

      Zen’s wilderness is a natural home to me.
      (I’m thinking of another post here :

      I am highly suspicious of all self-proclaimed of official Gurus teaching large numbers of disciples in a consensual voice full of sweet arguments.

      Loneliness is rough, destabilizing at times.
      But loneliness sure smell like truth to me.
      It is it the best safeguard I ‘ve found along the Way.

      Thank you Simon for reading this.

      Aimé par 1 personne

  2. Thank you for responding.

    No, I am not aware of Ryokan. Diogenes, however, espoused absolute simplicity, casting away his wooden cup when he saw a child drinking from water caught in his hands.

    No guru is worth following. All ideas are worth considering. Few ideas are worth accepting. And then, only for a time. That is a lone path, but loneliness is subjective.

    Who is Ryokan?

    Aimé par 1 personne

    1. Ryokan is generally famous for his Haiku-s.
      I’m sure you’ve heard some of them without necessarily knowing they were his.
      He was a highly unconventional monk in the 18/19th-century Japan.
      Like Diogenes, he was on a quest for utter simplicity.
      He had left all temples for a life of wandering through villages, offering calligraphy works here and there to sustain himself.
      When he came back in his wooden shelter and realized everything has been stolen he wrote the following poem :

      The thief,
      left behind,
      the moon at my window

      He has been a source of inspiration for me since I started this practice.
      For many reasons : he was despised and considered an idiot, then found a way to the Way aside the trodden way.

      nusubito ni torinokosareshi mado no tsuki

      I was actually trying to find info on Ryokan and found this website on which all his workd are downloadable in a Eng/ Jap version.
      This is fascinating!
      Thanks for giving me the opportunity to find this content ..

      Here’s the link :

      and the site :

      Aimé par 1 personne

      1. Formats are frames,
        haikus are about freedom.


        ignoring frames without prior mastery
        Is arrogance.

        This is why I don’t call the haikus I write haikus.


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