Poem: Gratitude to the Sangha

mb41-Gratitude1 I remember your feet that April day— Barefoot, sandaled— Slowly, tenderly touching that sweet portion of prairie. Someone said later that we must have kissed A hundred varieties of sprouting grasses And tiny blooms, and clover, and colorful weeds that day— Kissed the prairie with our feet.

The wind blew hard that day, too—remember? It wore us out and charged us up all at the same time. We came inside breathless and needing to settle, And we did. We breathed, feeling a quiet prairie wind move through our bones.

Gratitude to the Sangha. I remember bits and pieces of that day And many other days and nights— Sweet walks inside on the mat of the dojo. And I remember your faces— Animated in sharing, tranquil in meditation.

Gratitude to the Sangha. You are always here—when I see you and when I don’t. You are my groundedness in place and time, My home, my boat in flood waters.

And the most wondrous thing about you Is that you are growing. You now include the sky, the wind, the water, Beings large and small, beautiful and ugly, Healthy and suffering. Something in your generosity opens my heart. I can embrace more. I see the same in you.

Gratitude to the Sangha. Each of you has something to teach me— Learnings so treasured, so useful. Gratitude to the Sangha. The Eternal Mystery has given us to each other—rare gift. And in our gratitude we give this gift again and again Wherever we show up in the world. The gift multiplies and the sum is past figuring. Its power is beyond measure. Every human needs this kind of community. So, our joy-filled work will never end. There will be no unemployment for the Sangha.

And even on those days When we might feel our role is small Or our efforts feeble, We can always stop, breathe, Watch our feet touch prairie grass, Feel prairie wind move through our bones, And say with a whole heart “Gratitude to the Sangha.”

Pat Webb, True Mountain of Action

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