Upon a Marvellous Stone Buddha-image at Wat Bovoranives
by Bhikkhu Khantipalo
Behind bars they have placed you
But You are beyond all bars.
Standing serenely, O essence of Silence
Amid the ever-roaring of this world.
You stand, Your robes revealing
The fine outlines of the Buddha-body;
For You are the Timeless Truth
And Truth never needs concealing.
Two arms raised towards beholders
Profound the teaching gesture seen:
Forefingers touched upon by thumbs
Voidness demonstrating indestructible.
But what poor words, hopelessly inadequate
Portray your ancient face of peace?
The face of one who dwells in the ineffable.
In whom are seen Bliss and Void indescribable.
Every time I pass you, I pause,
To look upon your intense inwardness.
I look outward at You looking inward
And deep sounds the string struck in my heart.
Only one thing would I know--
Your face inspires in me a single question--
What, O what is it that you have known
And when, when shall I too know it?