Caveat: each time a different way

My loyal blog reader (and once-upon-a-time college roommate in Saint Paul in the 1980s) David Dickerson writes songs sometimes. He forwarded this one to me, and granted me permission to publish the lyrics as one of my “not my poetry” poems. I like the idea that sometimes the poetry published on my blog is by people other than me, but whom I actually know.

Roadside Buddha
Traveller, where are you going?
May I help you find your way?
Cause you have so many questions
Written on your face
I'm a roadside Buddha and might know the way
Yes, I've been there many times
But each time a different way
So you'll have to ask again
At the start of every day
I'm a roadside Buddha in a world of change
I regret I can't go with you
If you look back, you'll see I'm stone (a weathered stone Buddha)
I just wake the wisdom in you
You must go your path alone
I'm a roadside Buddha and here I'm home
Carry me in your heart (In your heart, in your heart)
Help others find their way (Help us shed the darkness)
Give them sustenence and love (Give us love, give us love)
You'll grow richer every day (Sharing makes us richer)
Be a roadside Buddha who colors the gray
And if you look into the future
You'll see that I'm ahead
Waiting by the roadside
To lend a hand again (To lend a hand)
I'm a roadside Buddha going your way

Above is a picture of a “roadside Buddha” whom I saw often in Korea. It’s along the trail at the Yeongcheon Temple (영천사) on the western flank of Gobong Mountain (고봉사), which I used to visit when living in Ilsan, Korea – it was the closest “traditional” Jogye Temple to where I lived (there were closer temples, but those were modern, urban temples, like the one behind the Cancer Center). It was about a 3 km walk. There was a very kind monk there with whom I sometimes spoke in my bad Korean. I believe one time I took my mother there and she met him, too.

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