It was a good day for him
paying attention, on purpose
becoming aware of unpleasant physical feelings
he took notice of nearby beautiful rose, intentionally.
500 years before Christ
Confucius wrote of the roses in the Imperial Gardens.
Centuries of Rosa cultivation now offers him
an instant source of beauty & fragrance
from the so-called Queen of Flowers.
A good sun-shining morning with coffee
sent him joyfully on his way.
While on the public transit
he witnesses a passenger get beaten by a gang of teens
angered when they were asked to quiet down.
All day he looked forward to smelling the roses.
Even when dwelling pleasantly in the present moment
feeling a loved one’s embrace & bright presence,
thoughts of past heroics & failures appear from nowhere
and send him soaring into blissful, nostalgic never, never land
or streets of racial, social, economic inequities, & war
or into a courtroom where his ex-beloved brutally
attacks with a lawyer extracting more than a pound of flesh;
and then thoughts of future’s uncertainty, oh, my
all this & more…
calling for an extra bouquet of grounding, healing power.
He may understand the notion that experiencing
suffering is essential
for compassion & true understanding to blossom;
no mud, no lotus.
But he can’t help but wonder if
it could be possible to soak in roses’ essence
a little longer, a little more sweeter
before the upcoming, next mud bath.
Does the rose have to do something?
No, the purpose of a rose is to be a rose.
Your purpose is to be yourself.
You don’t have to run anywhere to become someone else.
You are wonderful just the way you are…
~Thich Nhat Hanh, A Rose is a Rose is a Rose