First Days Of Spring


A lovely poem by the Zen monk Ryokan to remind us that joy is always right here, right now… wish you all a joy-filled weekend!


First days of spring… sky, bright sun.
Everything is gradually becoming fresh and green.
Carrying my bowl, I walk slowly to the village.
The children, surprised to see me,
Joyfully crowd about, bringing
my begging trip to an end by the temple gate.

I place my bowl on top of a white rock and
Hang my sack from the branch of a tree.
Here we play with the wild grasses and throw a ball.
For a time, I play catch while the children sing;
Then it’s my turn.

Playing like this, here and there, I have forgotten the time.
Passers-by point and laugh at me, asking,
“What is the reason for such foolishness?”
No answer I give, only a deep bow;
Even if I replied, they would not understand.
Look around! There is nothing besides this.


7 thoughts on “First Days Of Spring

  1. I adore the “foolishness” note! Indeed, when we’re webbed into our daily thoughts & perhaps possessed by “the fog of outdated dreams”, we may look at serenity & joy & see only foolishness! Beautiful poem, beautiful picture, beautiful lesson & beautiful of you to share it Sir! Thank you!

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