A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
Somehow, I kept climbing, though tired, hungry, and weak. Old, too.
At the top of the mountain, I spread my outer robe on a rock to dry, set down my staff and bowl, took a deep breath, and looked around.
It was windy up there.
As I was leaning back against a large gray rock,
the darkness I had carried up and down a million mountains
slipped off my shoulders and swept itself away on the wind.
This verse is from the Therigatha, a Buddhist text consisting of a collection of 73 short poems of women who were senior nuns. The poems date from a three hundred year period, starting in the late 6th century BCE. It is the companion text to the Theragatha, verses attributed to senior monks. It is the earliest known collection of women’s literature composed in India.
Source: Great Middle Way