The Buddha's Last Instruction 

"Make of yourself a light,"
said the Buddha,
before he died.
I think of this every morning
as the east begins
to tear off its many clouds
of darkness, to send up the first
signal – a white fan
streaked with pink and violet,
even green.
An old man, he lay down 
between two sala trees
and he might have said anything,
knowing it was his final hour.
The light burns upward,
it thickens and settles over the fields.
Around him, the villagers gathered
and stretched forward to listen.
Even before the sun itself
hangs, disattached, in the blue air,
I am touched everywhere
by its ocean of yellow waves.
No doubt he thought of everything
that had happened in his difficult life.
And then I feel the sun itself
as it blazes over the hills,
like a million flowers on fire - 
clearly I'm not needed,
yet I feel myself turning
into something of inexplicable value.
Slowly, beneath the branches,
he raised his head.
He looked into the faces of that frightened crowd.

Mary Oliver

3 Responses to Shine

  1. Lisa Hoffman says:

    Beautiful poem, Beautiful page.

  2. stephanie says:

    Beautiful page Fran…I love Mary Oliver…AND these are the words we did our yoga practice around on Saturday…

    ‘Make of yourself a light’ or ‘Carry your own lantern’

    lighting candles and so very anxious for tomorrow!

    peace my friend!

  3. eb says:

    Fran – I love your journal pages and your quiet deep and loving sensibility – so happy to walk HERE with you…

    xox – eb.

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