(As you might know, my wife is dying of cancer, that’s why you’ll see a bunch of death related posts on my blog for a bit.)
I first heard this poem sung as a song by Sister Chang Kong at a retreat with Thich Nhat Hanh. She talked about how she had sung it at the bed of a dying friend, and how it comforted him. It comforts me too.
This body is not me; I am not caught in this body
I am life without boundaries,
I have never been born and I have never died.
Over there the wide ocean and the sky with many galaxies
All manifests from the basis of consciousness
Since beginningless time I have always been free.
Birth and death are only a door through which we go in and out.
Birth and death are only a game of hide-and-seek.
So smile to me and take my hand and wave good-bye.
Tomorrow we shall meet again or even before.
We shall always be meeting again at the true source,
Always meeting again on the myriad paths of life.
-Thich Nhat Hanh