The Hooded Man

hunting echoes

in a canyon

with a ceremonial

drum

 

wearing an overcoat

of shadows

belonging to

someone else

 

seeking a river’s tears

under a willow tree

being coy with carp

and an egret

 

wobbling with

the newborn deer

in ignorance grass

on poppy meadows

 

where remembering

brings no opium

not for ghosts

or djinns

 

counting cherry stones

piled in perfect balance

a heap of Sakurai

in the making

 

a sandwich of Satori

rice paper fine

and as delicate

as dew

 

the dawn chases away

echoes and shadows

and walks daisies,

petal footsteps in the stream

 

tickling toes between

washing scales

as the sunlight

twinkles

 

the mists yawn

the trees sway

dancing mirror ponds

shimmer sequins

 

the stars stretch

their cosmic arms

teasing the hair

of night’s sky

 

and now even echoes

chime no more

Pie Jesu in the snow

as a lamb sings

 

frolicking with buttercups

and dents-de-lions

shorn of shadow coats

and now naked

 

no more soul

to clothe him

not now

not ever

 

the land of shadows

fades misty fast

without meals

or succour

 

and diamond eyed,

glinting galaxies,

he pulls up his cowl

the hooded man

 

… … hunts no more