Step Away from the Buddha: brief notes on reading and response, and on salvaging Haiku (and Two Haiku for April 22)

John Mackenzie is in fine, fighting form here, bitch-slapping Buddha like the little bitch Buddha is, and producing two fine poems in the process.

Mumbling Jack

Spring is here, and, with it, a volume of Japanese Death Poems (compiled by Yoel Hoffmann) sent to me by Andrew Griffin. This book sat on my shelf for a few weeks as I gradually overcame my distaste for the prominent placement of the Zen word* on its cover. I took the Death Poems for a coffee and a walk today, sat outside in the soft spring wind and started reading the Introduction. I’m glad I managed to get by the whiff of Buddhism seeping from it.

*I consider Buddhism to be a fatuous and flatulent religion, right up there with Deism as a gaseously thin and useless theological exercise, explaining nothing. I suppose I should resign myself to the inevitability of people farting it into discussions of science, fact, life, and console myself with the knowledge that its redolence is momentary and is always swept away by the…

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