Ryōkan Taigu


The thief left it behind:
the moon
at my window.


Ryōkan Taigu (良寛大愚?) (1758–1831) was a quiet and eccentric Sōtō Zen Buddhist monk who lived much of his life as a hermit. Ryōkan is remembered for his poetry and calligraphy, which present the essence of Zen life. He is also known by the name Ryokwan in English. Apparently this has been written after a thief robbed his hut, as translated in Mitchell, Stephen, editor. The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry. Harper Perennial, 1993. ISBN 978-0060920531, p.162