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Douglas Penick


Gesar, King of Ling's Song to the Great Rock Demoness


From the unmoving and undivided brilliance of simplicity itself,
At the zero point of life and death,
You are the clarity of fury, the vibrance of passion,
The wisdom of alternation.
You are the essence of movement and blackness of ink.

You stand, as if running, on the back of a raven.
With the uppermost of your four gleaming snake-like arms,
You crush the sun and moon.
With your lower right hand, you eat the heart of duality
In which you take form.
With your lower left hand, you drink from a skull cup
Filled with a boiling ocean of poisonous thoughts.

You fly through the darkness of an empty sky
And your enormous wet mouth is open wide,
Displaying your four glittering iron teeth.
Your turquoise hair streams upward like a world-ending wind,
And your eyebrows and lashes blaze like the fire at the end of time.
From your three eyes, bloodshot and bulging,
Flash jagged swords of purple lightning.
You are completely naked: your breasts hang down,
And your dark genitals are exposed and open.

Alone since beginningless time, you are the cold wind
Shearing high peaks with razors of frozen air,
And shrouding mountain corpses in sheets of silver ice.
With your thunderbolts, you carve highlands and valley
Into the face of the impassive earth.
When you shout with longing, avalanches dam the racing streams,
And lakes and green valleys spring to life.
Life here begins with your violent cry.
From the howling of your thunderous scream
Are born a million secret terrors.
Where there is struggle to survive,
You are the sharp essence of fear.

Nothing can hide from you,
And even the faint echo of your breath
Causes strokes, plagues, heart attacks and death.
You bring all to an end.

No rest, no stillness, no peace exists
That is not poised upon your gnashing fangs;
Nor warmth, nor growth, nor pleasant day
That is not clenched between your desolate angry claws.
The illusion of permanence is sustained by your breath alone.

With the slightest gesture of your long black arm,
The sky is cleared or filled with dark clouds,
The sun and moon shine or disappear.
As you dance alone and swirl in the empty air,
Vast, peaceful oceans become graveyards,
And lightning fires devastate the earth.
When your obsidian toe nails brush across the ground,
Ancient forests are shattered and their denizens crushed.
All that live on the earth or in the sea or air
Are forever at the mercy of your wild dance.

The beings who found themselves here in the Land of Snows
Cowered in terror of you, until one called on you
With gentle confidence and love. And from that love
You gave birth to a splendid race of brave men and women.
Just so, in the darkness of this time,
I call on you with longing untouched by frozen fear,
And offer love untouched by the hell-fire of hope.
In the realm where existence and non-existence do not part,
I offer up the subtle perfume of places and names.

In the realm where all motion is illusion,
I offer up the golden sky-flower of attraction and aversion.

In the realm where subject and object are not discriminated,
I offer up the bright torch of perception.

In the realm where chaos and order are one dance,
I offer up the delicious torma of conceptualization.

In the realm where ignorance and wisdom are inseparable,
I offer up the intoxicating liquor of individual consciousness.

With these offerings,
May we all enter the great dance of your wild embrace.
By the perfection of these illusory offerings,
Please be appeased and do not cast us off.

Since you are both existence and non-existence,
Let us not stray from wakefulness into the grip of the demon enemy.
Since you are both creation and destruction,
Let us not stray from wakefulness into the paths of hope and fear.
Since we cannot escape from you,
Let us be consumed in the bliss of your furious embrace.
Since the shadows of life and death have no meaning for you,
Please protect us with the light of unconditional confidence.

Since you cannot ever be appeased,
May confidence always expand like a silver sword
Cutting through the midnight sky.

Since you are the essence of genuineness,
May the life, mind and vow of Gesar, King of Ling
Reach its full measure in the great seal of confidence.

Since you are the essence of power,
May the life, mind and vow of the Rigden Kings
Confirm the strength and prosperity of this realm
And bring the Kingdom of Shambhala to this world.
Quickly, suddenly,
O like the wind,
Great Furious Black One, come now, come.
Swiftly, swiftly make this be so.

Submitted: Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Edited: Wednesday, September 19, 2012

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Poet's Notes about The Poem

The great range of mountains to the north is more a looming presence than something that can be clearly discerned, and the Lion Lord is pierced by a feeling of vast sadness at the fleeting nature of this life. Out of his longing and kindness, he sings this sponta- neous song to the Great Rock Demoness, the legendary mother of his people, who presides over the Mother lineage of Dralas:
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This can be found from pp.47-49 of THE WARRIOR SONG OF KING GESAR. Douglas Penick, Mill City Publishing,2009

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