Eyes a slip of grey from blue in a city not known as home,
on a mountainside to shelter a temple,
she is as welcome as the wind is warm,
she was there before us and we were caught before we knew it.
She carves life, carefully, like the Buddha etched into stone,
the chisel is the compliment to the rock and not the ruin,
an outer expression of inner contentment,
a monastic monk on a meditative mountain and I fall
between the stillness that rests behind each word.
Did her mouth smile
or just her eyes that shade of grey a brush away from blue
as she takes us to her temporary temple of wood and wonder
and shares with us a simple feast on a sweltering day
a treat along the trail, a rest upon the journey,
a moment to bear witness; not to be greater than the Buddha,
not to rise higher but to reflect on what we can become.
We climb over rock and broken earth,
diverge through dead ends that still deliver more light than loss,
we thirst and tire and then take in another treat; another temple, another tree,
a smile from the locals who look and laugh
and wonder why we came and what we will take back.
We travel on and place our tired feet into holds others once held to
as we witness wonders so many others may never see.
We have sat and shared joy like food, laughter like it was love
and coffee like it was an elixir to let us in on the light that lingers over life
and the eyes of the gentle light from Lithuania,
a slip of grey from a sea of blue
seeing the simple synchronicity in all that is true.
All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly. This week’s theme is South Korea and recalling the travels though it and the faces found along the way.