01.12 Dhammadinnā Therī (12)

Weingast’s title is “Dhammadinna ~ She who Has Given Herself to The Dharma”


12. One should be eager, determinate, and suffused with mind; one whose thought is not attached to sensual pleasures is called an “up-streamer”.


For so long,

I thought only

of the river’s end.

Then one morning,

I set my paddle down

to watch the sun rise

over the eastern hills—

only to find

myself floating


gently upstream.

I promise.

It was not what I had expected.


1 comment

  1. “One who is eager and determined … whose mind is not wrapped up in sensual pleasures…” becomes THE EXACT OPPOSITE MEANING “I set my paddle down to watch the sun rise… ”

    In addition to having the opposite meaning, Matty’s more refined and delicate (dare I say, “ladylike”?) prose shifts the confident, declarative “is called” to a kind of bewildered helplessness (“floating somehow”).

    The things I love most about the Therigatha are (a) the uncompromising indictment of lazy hedonism and (b) the lack of gender nonsense. Matty has inverted both those strengths across the book, but it’s particularly clear in this poem.

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