A new friend reminded me of this temple in T'aichung, T'aiwan that I visited back in the summer of 1981. I included this explanation in my description of it to him: "Just scoped this off of the internet. They've painted the old boy gold! He was grey weathered concrete back when I first encountered him, and he had a swallow's nest under his nose with bird guano running down his lip. It gave him the look of a crazy uncle who needed a kleenex!"
BUDDHA IN GLORY
Center of all centers, core of cores
almond self-enclosed and growing sweet
all this universe, to the furthest stars
and beyond them, is your flesh, your fruit.
Now you feel how nothing clings to you;
your vast shell reaches into endless space,
and there the rich, thick fluids rise and flow.
Illuminated in your infinite peace,
a billion stars go spinning through the night,
blazing high above your head.
But in you is the presence that
will be, when all the stars are dead.
~ Rainer Maria Rilke, 1875 - 1926
translated from the German by Stephen Mitchell