Listen my children and listen well:
I have an important story to tell
Of some who have risen and some who have fell
And those who've transcended both heaven and hell.

Well once long ago in a land far away.
Lived a house full of children absorbed in their play,
Their father had left them alone for the day
To travel the highroads and the lonely pathways.

While the children were playing the house caught on fire.
They continued their games while the hot flames rose higher
Just then their father from his journey returned;
How he trembled in fear lest his children be burned!

"Come out! Come out!" to his children he cried.
But they were too busy with their toys inside.
Though they heard his warning they paid him no mind,
For they had no intention of leaving their toys behind.

So finally he called to them, "Come out. I have toys'.
To give each of you, my dear girls and boys.
Sheep carts, and deer carts, and ox carts, and more.
Now, come out and take them for they are all yours."

Then the kids in a scramble they ran from the house.
Pushing and shoving in a dash they ran out.
They went straight to their father where in the crossroads he stood,
Saying, "Give us those carts like you promised you would!"

Then the father he told them in a voice low and calm,
"Of sheep carts, and deer carts, and ox carts I've none.
But I have a grand carriage pulled by oxen so white,
Hung with tassels and bells, a magnificent sight."

Now the Buddha's the great compassionate father of us all,
And he sees us in the Triple World as we rise and we fall,
Driven by greed, and compelled by desire,
Playing our games while the hot flames rise higher.

He has promised expedient dharmas indeed,
Blessings and virtues, and Vehicles, Three.
But when from Samsara's inferno we run,
He will give us the Buddha Way, the Vehicle One.

For there's only One Vehicle in the worlds, great and small,
The Lotus of Dharma which blooms in us all.
For there's only One Vehicle, not two or threeŚ
Rejoice now! For one day, Buddhas we'll be.

(Repeat last verse)                              Heng-yin '77