Inspired by Robert Aitken Roshi and Thich Nhat Hanh, I’ve begun composing simple verses which help align me with the Zen way for those countless everyday jobs — washing the dishes (of course), but also answering the phone, driving in heavy traffic, “reading scholarly comments,” etc., etc., etc.
As a sample, Gatha #16 in Thich Nhat Hanh’s Present Moment, Wonderful Moment reads:
Entering the meditation room,
I see my true self.
As I sit down,
I vow to cut off all disturbances.
Using Aitken-roshi’s poetic meter,* this is my adaptation.
Entering the zendo
I vow with all beings
to cut off all disturbances
and see this true self.
* See Zen Vows for Daily Life by Robert Aitken.