You were a fountain
of cool stream water
in the square of a dusty town,
and you were the source of that stream,
on a high, unseen peak.
You were, Luang Por, that mountain itself,
but variously seen.
Luang Por, you were never one person,
you were always the same.
You were the child laughing
at the Emperor’s new clothes, and ours.
You were a demand to be awake,
the mirror of our faults, ruthlessly kind.
Luang Por, you were the essence of our texts,
the leader of our practice,
the proof of its results.
You were a blessing bonfire
on a windy, bone-chilled night:
How we miss you!
Luang Por, you were the sturdy stone bridge,
we had dreamed of.
You were at ease
in the present
as if it were your own ancestral land.
you were the bright full moon
that we sometimes obscured with clouds.
You were ironwood, you were banyan, and you were bodhi:
Luang Por, you were a freshly dripping lotus
in a world of plastic flowers.
Not once did you lead us astray.
You were a lighthouse for our flimsy rafts
on the heaving sea.
you are beyond my words of praise and all description.
Humbly, I place my head
beneath your feet.
This poem by Ajahn Jayasaro is from the book, Stillness Flowing.