Image-Text-Music, 9.23.14 — Rembrandt, Philip Whalen, Arvo Part

Painting by Rembrandt, "Philosopher in Meditation" (1632)

Painting by Rembrandt, “Philosopher in Meditation” (1632)

“A Vision of the Bodhisattvas,” by Philip Whalen


They pass before me one by one riding on animals

“What are you waiting for,” they want to know


Z—, young as he is (& mad into the bargain) tells me

“Some day you’ll drop everything & become a rishi, you know.”


I know

The forest is there, I’ve lived in it

    More certainly than this town? Irrelevant—


    What am I waiting for?

A change in customs that will take 1000 years to come about?

Who’s to make the change but me?


    “Returning again and again,” Amida says


Why’s that dream so necessary? walking out of whatever house alone

Nothing but the clothes on my back, money or no

Down the road to the next place the highway leading to the


From which I absolutely must come back


What business have I to do that?

I know the world and I love it too much and it

Is not the one I’d find outside this door.



Arvo Pärt, “Tabula Rasa: II. Silentium


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