This superb anthology of Buddhist poems assembled by Gary Gach is a parade of infinite variety and delight! The nonconformist Beat poets are here with their Dharma kits. They don't walk in a straight line-Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and Kenneth Rexroth.
Keep your eyes peeled for Zen teachers and their poetic observations Thich Nhat Hanh, Bernard Glassman, John Tarrant, and others. I loved the gathas by Robert Aitken. Here's an example on parking a car: "Parking this car, carefully, attentively, / I vow to help all beings to their resting place."
One of the treats in savoring a collection like this one is finding old friends who march to the beat of their own drum like Gary Snyder, Jane Hirshfield, and Thomas Merton. I was bowled over by a new voice-Peter Levitt. Here's a few of his gems from "100 Butterflies": "The bell / speaks / for itself." Another: "No life but this one. / Tall grasses / bow in the wind." And last, but not least: "It's easy to die. / Just give your breath / back to the trees / and the wind." A final note: Haiku devotees will find plenty to relish in this wonderful anthology.