The Road to Sertang Temple
A Monk speaks,
"The Hidden Land is finished."
Im awakened as a flock of Golden
Plovers in winged poise scatter
like flying rainbow fish.
I seek the Gold Mandala
trekking in the Himalayas,
hiking to secret falls,
paddling up rivers to beyul*
among ice peaks,
inscribed with snow.
Water torrents cascade from cliffs
and wind hums among oak trees.
Our prayer flags tatter and tear
as we take the perilous paths
trudging over cliffs in smoky fog
capturing the soul of silence.
Juniper scents envelop hillsides.
Chortens* of Buddha engrave
stone walls by caves of saints.
A Lama chants, dances, burns incense;
as Monks in royal robes meditate.
In the courtyard, musk deer and wild goats
are sacrificed in the chasm where Hanuman langurs* once lapped
We cross the bridge where forest fires,
fanned by winds,
roar through gunmetal air.
Under clouds we camp in the meadow
with the vision of the Valley of Bliss
floating off into the galaxy.
- Carol Leavitt Altieri
*Beyul, remote sanctuaries;
*chortens, universal shrines symbolizing the one Buddha;
*Hanuman langurs, a slender, long-tailed Hindi monkey of the genus Presbytis.
Getting a taste of God's creation as it should be!
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