Addressed a portrait of his teacher, placed before the altar, Shugen Roshi read the following dedicatory poem:
Each day, the great blue heron
comes to stand in the lotus pond—
upright, motionless, alert—
searching for fish
who yearn to be dragons.
You too were a fisherman
throwing your line and bait
into deep waters,
waiting for the high-spirited ones
to climb onto the hook.
Though you laid down your reel
dragons continue to emerge from the muddy waters,
seeking satisfaction for the sake of today.
And so we bow and make offerings
for your many gifts.
They continue to flow, you know.
Yes, Old Teacher,
they continue to flow.
Following the memorial service, we shared a documentary made in 1990 on the occasion of the Monastery’s 10th anniversary. The film includes lots of wonderful footage from the early days and a full recounting of how ZMM came into being. You can watch it again below!
Next came a special dinner for Monastery residents. Hojin Sensei and a few others joined a number of home practitioners online for a chat and chew. The meal was a true labor of love, with house-made lasagna noodles and just about everything else grown from the garden or Hudson Valley farms.
Wait, Wait…Don’t Approve Me!
In the evening we held an MRO quiz and variety show that included special guests, interactive fun and some stellar performances by sangha members with special talents.
Saturday evening’s performance offerings included (left to right) clyde Fusei forth, Josephine Maya Simple, Paul Stokes, Warren Chikan Bacon, Degna Chikei Levister, and (not pictured) Horace Kaishu Moody.
Contestants on the game show portion featured senior monastics and a number of home practitioners. Many of us had not laughed quite as hard in recent memory. But these new memories will last us a long time.