On Jikoji Pond
Swinging in a hammock on a pond covered in duckweed,
hanging from three oak trees, I reflect on the beauty of no reflection
and the stillness and motion captured by the five senses.
Taking it all in, yet breathing it all out – I’m freed.
The duckweed’s cover is frosty like lime ice cream,
surrounding floating green islands of baby lilly pads.
Two-tailed yellow butterflies dance with the dragonflies,
and a wild boar’s midnight mud bath shimmers in the light’s gleam.
In the distant trees, a woodpecker rat-a-tat-tats, a barn owl hoots,
and gray-tailed squirrels belch from their nests in the tree tops.
Steller blue jays play a happy chorus while a red-legged frog croaks
and a baby red-shouldered hawk toots.
The odor of freshly burned oak fills the air
and the piney smell of pinecones dotted along the shore.
Scents of mossy bark and fresh mildew are strong
but perfumed smells from tiny wild flowers are also there.
A cool breeze bristles the skin as the hammock swings
and tickles each toe dangling through the sandals.
Beads of sweat gather and gently roll down the skin
to soothe the many places where the mosquito stings.
Eating fresh picked huckleberries that grow nearby
and chaparral currents hidden in thickets in the tree groves.
A cool drink of freshly squeezed lemonade quenches
and so do the plums, cherries, and homemade apple pie.
Savoring each moment while knowing it won’t last;
enjoying the full engagement of the senses
on a pond full of beauty, joy, and bliss,
while letting go of each once they have passed.