The Barn’s are Burning

“My barn having burned down, I can now see the moon.” –Mizuta Masahide (17th century Japanese poet)

The barns seem to be aflame
everywhere I turn my gaze.
Our storehouses of what we think we need
are perhaps more fragile than we thought.
No one wants to lose the multitude of things
we’ve gathered against the threats we feel.
No one wants to be uncomfortable,
without the toys we play with.

But the price we paid for all the things
we think are bringing safety,
has been dearer than we thought.
We seldom see the moon,
or any of the wonder she reflects.
Our walls, and all they symbolize,
have separated us from life itself
and substituted videos and words.
Roofs have cut Divine light off
and cocooned us in a dark illusion.

Perhaps we should celebrate the burning,
frightening though it is at times.
It might bring hardship and discomfort.
It may require faith and trust and courage.
But we may again, when all is said and done,
see the Moon, stars, and recover wonder.
We may view each other fresh and new,
and find creative ways to see and be
the deeper life the Earth asks of us now.

Author: William Martin

Taoist teacher and consultant

One thought on “The Barn’s are Burning”

  1. Just beautiful! May I be rained upon my the moon, stars & universe!How do I not feel guilty that I didn’t know this & do this sooner than now?!


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