In the wild winter wind
the voice of the water cracks
falling across the rocks.
~ Yosa Buson
The wind is howling like a lone wolf calling into the wild. As I walk along the coastal dunes taking in the beauty of this seemingly barren place, the wind pushes against me relentlessly. I lean into it, in order to remain upright, and am pelted by cold winter rain. The sound of the wind, however, is no match for the roar of the breakers coming in from far out in the Pacific that crash against the shore. “The voice of water,” wrote Buson, “cracks” and in this moment I know what he means. The sound of the surf is a near continuous roar, but I notice for the first time that there is a tiny space in there, a crack in the voice of the water, that opens up into vastness. And in that crack there is thundering silence that is unsurpassable, ungraspable and eternal. Will you enter it with me or shall I go alone?
And here is a poem I wrote inspired by this moment:
Winter wind howls into the wild blue Pacific.
Walking along the coast I lean into the wind, barely staying upright.
Pelted by hard rain, the wind blows relentlessly while
Roaring ocean waves crumble and crash against the softness of the shore.
Hearing a crack in the voice of the water, I open in the vastness
And stand upright, swaying neither here nor there and
Listen to the thundering silence, all around and within,
Ungraspable, unsurpassable and eternal.
Shall I enter it? Will you enter it with me?