Saying Good-bye to a Singing Girl Who Has Decided to Become a Nun
by Mo Shih-lung (c. 1539-1587)
Translated by Jonathan Chaves
You have called at the gate of the True Vehicle,
your worldly self is no more.
You have said farewell forever
to the golden chambers,
the wind and the dust.
Lightly you wield the yak-tail whisk;
your singing fan lies on the floor.
You learn to adjust your meditation cushion,
and laugh at the dancer's mat.
No more resentment when rouge fades
like red flowers;
no longer will the feathered hairdo appear in your mirror.
Mist, light, water--quiet Zen mind:
I know a new springtime
in the Realm of Emptiness.