“The rioters who wore cassocks were no real monks
and what they did is completely against Buddhist codes,”
said Ngawang Daindzin, a living Buddha.
All in all, it’s China’s Tibet, now and forever.
-Xinhua, 19 March 2008
Empty talk endangers the nation.
Practical work brings prosperity.
-a billboard in Shekou
There are living Buddhas
on every side of every war. Nothing
they do changes the coming into being
of it, the passing away of it.
Passing away catches the eye: bodies
count, the slow awakening
of corpses piled high
while cities burn.
Ten thousand Buddhas see
what is not there
after the city has died. But not
anger burning slow under
impatience at the slow
curve of a twisted universe turned,
one in ten thousand Buddhas
chants, to justice.
Resigned to the slow turn
of a world still
turning, all the time
in the world is occupied
with no. States
line up living Buddhas
like barricades, tip them
like buses in burning streets, check
body counts, silence what is
out of line, contain
slow burns off stage so
nobody shouts fire until
all that is left is ashes.
…on the fifth anniversary of the U.S. occupation of Iraq