Friday, September 16, 2016

The Sunday Poet: Marc Livanos

"My poems have appeared in Straylight Magazine, Poet’s Espresso Review, Stray Branch Magazine, Old Red Kimono, Ship of Fools, Song of the San Joaquin Quarterly, Emerald Coast Review, WestWard Quarterly, PKA's Advocate, The Ultimate Writer Quarterly, The Pink Chameleon,, and others. My chapbooks “Panhandle Poet - Solitude” and “Panhandle Poet - Second Helpings” are available online at"

The Reasons

saw my Buddha
and came over.

Smiling, he recounted
the basic beliefs
of Buddhism.

The mind exists to the extent 
necessary for thought
and to cling to naught.

The body exists to experience
feelings like lust or non-lust
and to learn how to abandon them.

Life’s journey shows how
material fetters the mind
and the way to see clearly.

The truth is revealed,   
when opinions are dropped
and other ways tolerated.

Such wisdom comes
from the Buddhist text
“Discourse on Mindfulness.”

I asked why Buddha,            
being non-materialistic,
is portrayed beautifully robed?

He explained how Alexander’s troops 
came upon the Ganges and
saw a priest without clothes.

“Why are you without clothes?”
The priest responded,
“Why are you with clothes?”

Alexander stayed and listened,
enthralled that so many cared
about a man who died centuries earlier.

Commissioning a statue,
his sculptor robed the Buddha
in a fine Greek tunic.

All told, Rajith’s eyes lit up,
hearing I was Greek and
my son’s name is Alexander.

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