all of us trying to be our own personal brand and none of us asking how it feels

to be flat and shiny and spread around like info jizz

so confused by a media haze, hitched to a worthless gaze, while the screens blaze

all of us trying to be our own personal brand and none of us asking how it feels

to stand up for ourselves on a screen with a profile, but not with our words, our actions, our bodies, our souls, our love

straight addicted to thoughts, thoughts looped in knots, not’s and cant’s and wont’s

all of us trying to be our own personal brand and none of us asking how it feels

to be narcissus in the squeeze chute, burning our own brands red hot across our own eyes

so blind, we start peeling faces with places, dicing souls with races

all of us trying to be our own personal brand and none of us asking how it feels

to be tripping on dreams, never just dreaming, huffing fates, never just breathing

breathing in the wisdom from centuries ago…

 

To carry the self forward and illuminate myriad things is delusion. That myriad things come forth and illuminate the self is awakening.’

 

– From the Genjokoan, as translated by Robert Aitken and Kazuaki Tanahashi. Revised at San Francisco Zen Center, and later at Berkeley Zen Center; published (2000) in Tanahashi, Enlightenment Unfolds(Boston: Shambhala), 35-9. Earlier version in Tanahashi 1985 (Moon in a Dewdrop), 69-73, also Tanahashi and Schneider 1994 (Essential Zen).