MALAYSIAN HAIKU/SENRYU ECHOES 427: HANGING COFFIN
coffins hang on cliff
cry out regrets to heaven
all forgiving god
defer death sentence
time to tune priorities
let vain desire die
loan is lost again
work motive mismatch
This haiku/senryu is in response to V.J. Knutson weekly challenge 33, with the theme of UPSIDE DOWN, posted on 29th Jan, 2019, in her ONE WOMAN’S QUEST. The picture os THE HANGED MAN, belongs to her; the other picture is by Helene Vaillant. My picture has been in my blog for six years, and one reader has ever asked me what it was. It was a HANGING COFFIN, at Mount Wuyi, China. Hanging coffin was a minority tradition in China, but the same tradition was also noted other south east Asian countries. The coffin was hanged on high cliff instead of buried, and, in that sense, it was UPSIDE DOWN.
Sonorous through crevices and caves, the missing tiger roar’d;
We mounted, without any marshal art[i], up the heavenly tour.
Peeped at narrow light aperture, but no goddess took bath.
The bodhisattva at the peak forbade our ascending path.
At the foothills, arhat[ii] tea and rocky fungus, were on promote;
Six bushes of imperial red robe[iii] on cliff were cutthroat.
A six-seater bamboo raft rowed down from upstream;
Gorgeous gorges, turns and twists, meandered in daydreams.
Calligraphy competed with misty rocky formation in bliss;
The hanging coffin[iv] reminded earthly souls what was missed.
[i] Wuyi, name of mountain is homophonic with marshal art.
Please look at scenic pictures together with the verses.
Life meanders in 9 turns and 18 twist, up and down stream in a raft.
Witness peaks and valleys, nature and nurture,
And the hanging coffin as a reminder before looking up at heaven.
[ii] “Tie Lou Han (Iron Arahant), fermented red tea.
[iii] Fermented dark red oolong tea for emperors, now for leaders.