I am the gardener of this field
There are seeds I sow
And those that have been sown
I am the expression of myself
And all those I have met before
I am the gardner and my job
Is to cultivate these seeds
Regardless of how good or bad
So that they can come into the light
Of the midday sun.
So that I can continue to nourish and cultivate those that benefit myself, my family, and my friends.
For too long I have covered them up
With the soil from which
they try to emerge.
I have tried to hide those that I don’t want,
or have been too distracted to understand their true manifestation.
We are the gardners,
and this is our field.
**This poem came about from a meditation session after beginning to read Understanding our Mind by Thich Nhat Hanh. The book is a personal translation, or rather a personal interpretation (?) of fifty verses based on Vasubandhu’s Twenty and Thirty Verses. Vasubandhu’s is based on the Abhidharma, which is a scholastic approach -written by many different Buddhist scholars over time- to the Buddhas sutras. (I’m sure some of this could be corrected, however the point is that this poem comes from a translation of an interpretation, of an interpretation, a continuation of many in between.)
So this poem and the continual personal reinterpretations of these insights enumerates what is said in the fifth verse:
Whether transmitted by family, friends, society, or education, all our seeds are, by nature, both individual and collective.
I can’t say that I really feel that this is my poem in the sense that I am the sole author, the creator of the piece. I feel a great humility in being a part of the immensity of these insights. Understanding that the poem may not make as big of an impact to others, I still wanted to share it as I’ve noticed recently that when I look back on poems I’ve written all the things that I tried to say, but was unable to convey in words comes flushing back, which may just be one of the greatest things about poetry (of all the great things). I hope only that in some way it conveys something similar for you.