Poetry Collection

By Master Thich Thanh Tu

A Lesson of Life
Destroy The Self
If You Know
For You
Last Moment of The Body
My Perception of Life
Return Home
The Air's Habituation
The Dai Mei Path
The Path of Liberation
The Shi Tou Path
The True Emptiness
The Wild Sunflowers

(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Lean on this false self
To wander in this dreamlike world
When the dream is over
Laugh in veracity
Mark a few words
To advice the dream wanderers
Knowing it's a dream
You're awakened!

The Wild Sunflowers

(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Here are the wild sunflowers
Only grow along the forests
Ensconce aside the highways
Be the hedge to against ill-doers
Late Autumn, come the buds
Open bright in yellow
In spite of people's disdain
They exert to adorn the homeland
In joy, they're picked by the herdsmen
In need, they're the rats' hideout
They're the protector of all beings

Destroy The Self
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

One's life depends on the breath
On every beat of the heart
What is a life?
A continuous borrowing

The Air's Habituation
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Inhalation depends on the air
So as the exhalation
The respiration
Depends on the air
Once its habituation halts
This body is like a log

The True Emptiness
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

The true emptiness is unchangeable
The false existence is often changed
Clouds, as same as bubbles
Are separated and united endlessly
On the ocean, shines the moon
Deep green mountains are dormant
Immense, is the open sea
Far deep, is the blue sky
Crowded, vehicles on the streets
Boats keep moving in the sea
All factors in life are changing
On the stone seat, the Buddhist
practitioner sits calmly

The Shi Tou Path
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

On the past Shi Tou path
Yin Feng fell over
On the present Shi Tou path
The traveler walks with the feeling moved

A Lesson of Life
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Today you love me
Yes! I thank you
But I am gutless to think of tomorrow
That world has given us
So much of undesirable things
We must cleverly practice
To override these unfortunate occurrences
The painful changes always happen to us
When they come, we should smile and never cry
It's because that is the rule of nature in the world

The Da Mei Path

(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Meandering, the Da Mei Path
The rungs evenly spread like
the dragon coils
Shady, the Plumeria trees
Yellow Blossoms welcome Spring
with a smile

If You Know
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

If you know how life is
There should be no worry in your mind
Who laughed in joy last year
Who suffers this day
Who possessed indescribable wealth
Who now could hardly eat a full bowl
Who was the most honor
Who is now in disgrace
Life keeps go on, and go on
Time keeps taking away human lives
Innumerable people, who want
to hold on
What left is just a grave
In the lake, the water is translucent
And the moon appears bright
In rivalry, kids try to pick it
But after all, it's an empty hand
Let's stop the naivete
Lift yourself to look to the clear sky
There! The bright moon in middle of the quiet night
No more struggling in searching for it
Now that you could see the bright moon
No more diving for searching
If you know that's how life is
Should there be any worry in your mind?

My Perception of Life
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

The body (of four aggregates) is like smoke
Its activities are like clouds
Success is like ice block
Failure is like dissolved bubbles
Honor or dishonor is like water balloons
Love or hatred is like morning dew
Grief or happiness is like a dream
Fortune or misfortune is like a flying bird's shadow
Days elapse like a wink
Gain or loss is like the moon's reflection in waving water
After all, it's just a mild wind
The clear sky is definitive

For You
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Do you know that life is full of anguish?
Just because people continue to
spread abhorrence
And cause so much of pain, devastation,
and imprisonment
The result is just a nightmare
Such fame, prosperity, and beauty
Far away they are sparkling
Fighting with each other, we try to catch them
Holding them, but it's just an empty hand
They are just the bubbles on the river
Thus, it's worthless trying to possess
With the clear sky, white clouds, cool wind,
and bright moon
In the garden, green trees and flowers are smiling
In harmony, the crickets chirp and birds
sing beautifully
This is where appears the true nature
The thousand year abhorrence has vanished
in the dream
And no more suffering of the past
To see it, never dwell in false thoughts
Let them immerse in the peaceful sea
This happiness is indescribable
Only reveals through the everlasting smiles.

The Path of Liberation
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Here, the path of Liberation
Wide, direct, and smooth
The Gate of True Emptiness is at front
The back is the Hill of Contentment
Far away, come, the liberated visitors
To welcome, the guess room and
dinner hall open wide
Custard-apples, longans, and
jack-fruits are served
Paper flowers and cherry blossoms
are trifling
Down town, sounds the music of joy
In time, East wind flaps the garments

Last Moment of The Body
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Still functions, still warm, the body
still exists
End of functioning and warmness, it
lies in the field
Mourning in sadness
When consciousness attaches to
karma,no hope for reunion

Return Home
(Translated by Tu Tam Hoang)

Oh, mankind! We are mistaken
To leave the home land, wandering
For each step, the further we get
In front is full of danger
Violent storm blows cause the small boat unsteady
In the forest, await the tigers and wolves
The mountains are cliffy, while the abysses are far deep
A false step could finish a life
The companions are betrayal unexpectedly
Friendly in one moment, but hostile soon after
With hatred, the knife or gun is in hand
Ruthlessly, they kill each other
In front is full of traps
Pointing up, the spikes await
A good dodge could cause bloody scratches on the feet
Inattention could cost a life

Let's return home! my dear mankind
Let's stop moving forward
Because one step could cost our life
Why should we be fool to continue falling into suffering?
The old home is forever filled with happiness
Waiting for his young children, the father's eyes are weary
The dear mother awaits for their return
Seeing them would ease their long waiting
Here, the indescribable treasure
They could enjoy as they're pleased
In the front yard, the flowers open with sweet scents
In the back yard, the trees are full with ripened fruits
No more days of suffering
Leave behind all dangers
At home, it's full of love
Seeing mankind as they are no different from ourselves