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October: A Red Leaf for You

十月,送你一片紅葉|真如老師作品
十月,送你一片紅葉|真如老師作品

October in the North,

The sky's horizon is vast and unburdened.

As always, the clouds transform into a plethora of shapes

Like gestural paintings splashing across the sky,

Presenting their own unique style.

October’s deep autumn in Canada’s North,

When all of the maple leaves have turned red,

I am thinking of you,

Are you well?

Beside the waters and near the bridges

–gracefully–

Large and small maples stand,

Unveiling shades of scarlet, maroon, and blush,

Their expanse of warm fiery-reds

Give people pause,

Catching their eyes,

Encouraging them to linger in glorious praise.

And sometimes–on some trees–one may find three or four colors!

Amber, emerald, blush, crimson, scarlet...

In profusion they meet the eye, their dimensions untold:

Amber is delicate, emerald is serene, scarlet is rich–like oil on canvas.

A vibrant coral-red leaf sways amongst the layers of colour, and

Within the blue sky and above the green earth,

The red maple dances in the wind–

Like the persevering lark,

Singing its rousing song.

When autumn’s winds tightly encroach and winter’s chills descend,

Thousands of trees shed their leaves to enter winter, barren.

Yet the maple dons its beautiful new garments

–standing upright–

Offering itself to the world,

Warming people’s hearts.

In the cold,

Its reserve of spring and summer’s warmth suddenly burgeons,

Like the heart of a long-time practitioner

–in a moment–

Realizations blooming like flowers,

Emanating leaf upon red leaf the heart of Bodhicitta–

As if to comfort all sentient beings.

With devotion,

The maple tirelessly defends autumn’s brilliance

–thoroughly resplendent–

The earth’s most vivid poetry.

In October,

A red leaf

–a gift–

From me to you.

Please do not forget a practitioner’s bearings,

Though autumn’s winds are strong, and winter’s not long in its arrival,

There is still reason to muster all of one’s sincerity,

To bloom a tree of radiance.

Like the warm fire-red tree standing between the earth and the clouds,

Because of its leaves,

It is luminous.

When faced with hardship,

Let us remember to also use positive thoughts,

To transform negative circumstances into learning opportunities.

When met with adversity,

Let us turn more deeply towards practices of the heart,

Like the leaves of the maple

–burgeoning in the midst of frigid winds–

Let us turn challenges into aspirations for Bodhicitta,

Joyously opening our hearts in the chillest of winds.

Through rigorously practicing the virtuous teachings of the Mahayana path

Let us advance toward the deep azure sky, and

Find the wisdom of emptiness.

Translated in 2019
by AMRITA Moonlight International Translation Academy

October in the North,

The sky's horizon is vast
and unburdened.

As always, the clouds transform into
a plethora of shapes

Like gestural paintings
splashing across the sky,

Presenting their own unique style.

October’s deep autumn
in Canada’s North,

When all of the maple leaves
have turned red,

I am thinking of you,

Are you well?

Beside the waters
and near the bridges

–gracefully–

Large and small maples stand,

Unveiling shades of scarlet,
maroon, and blush,

Their expanse of warm fiery-reds

Give people pause,

Catching their eyes,

Encouraging them to linger
in glorious praise.

And sometimes–on some trees–
one may find three or four colors!

Amber, emerald, blush,
crimson, scarlet...

In profusion they meet the eye,
their dimensions untold:

Amber is delicate, emerald is serene,
scarlet is rich–like oil on canvas.

A vibrant coral-red leaf sways
amongst the layers of colour, and

Within the blue sky
and above the green earth,

The red maple dances in the wind–

Like the persevering lark,

Singing its rousing song.

十月,送你一片紅葉|真如老師作品
十月,送你一片紅葉|真如老師作品

When autumn’s winds
tightly encroach
and winter’s chills descend,

Thousands of trees shed their leaves
to enter winter, barren.

Yet the maple dons its

beautiful new garments

–standing upright–

Offering itself to the world,

Warming people’s hearts.

In the cold,

Its reserve of spring and summer’s
warmth suddenly burgeons,

Like the heart of a long-time
practitioner

–in a moment–

Realizations blooming like flowers,

Emanating leaf upon red leaf
the heart of Bodhicitta–

As if to comfort all sentient beings.

With devotion,

The maple tirelessly defends
autumn’s brilliance

–thoroughly resplendent–

The earth’s most vivid poetry.

In October,

A red leaf

–a gift–

From me to you.

Please do not forget
a practitioner’s bearings,

Though autumn’s winds are strong,
and winter’s not long in its arrival,

There is still reason
to muster all of one’s sincerity,

To bloom a tree of radiance.

Like the warm fire-red tree
standing between the earth
and the clouds,

Because of its leaves,

It is luminous.

When faced with hardship,

Let us remember
to also use positive thoughts,

To transform negative circumstances
into learning opportunities.

When met with adversity,

Let us turn more deeply
towards practices of the heart,

Like the leaves of the maple

–burgeoning in the midst of
frigid winds–

Let us turn challenges
into aspirations for Bodhicitta,

Joyously opening our hearts
in the chillest of winds.

Through rigorously practicing
the virtuous teachings
of the Mahayana path

Let us advance toward
the deep azure sky, and

Find the wisdom of emptiness.

十月,送你一片紅葉|真如老師作品
十月,送你一片紅葉|真如老師作品

Translated in 2019
by AMRITA Moonlight International Translation Academy

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  • Maurice Tong

    Thanks teacher for missing us and sending encouragement to us. Despite we may face challenge and setbacks, we should learn from the maple tree to stand against the hardship and strive to excel for the well being for all.

    43 Reply