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KUNDUN, a movie about the Dalai Lama

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Below is the poem entitled KUNDUN, a movie about the Dalai Lama which was written by poet KJ Hooten. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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KUNDUN, a movie about the Dalai Lama

What struck me is that it showed him
Always leaving
And sadly looking back
At his family home
Going to Llasa
To be (re)educated
Tenzin Gyatso was found as a young child
Went through many tests to prove
That he was the 13th Dalai Lama
Reincarnated
He passed the tests
“That cup is mine”
“These prayer beads are mine”
“There is where I kept my (false) teeth”

His family was allowed to follow
And were set up in a new household
Where Tenzin was allowed to visit
Merely visit
He lived at the palace
Away from his mother
He had to learn 
Duties of state

As he matured,
He had to leave
His childhood
And take his title
At age 15
To deal with the Chinese
Who forced him 
To leave his country
His people, although some followed
The last scene shows him 
Standing in his new room
Near the Indian Tibetan border
Looking back through his telescope

I then watched JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR;
then went to bed
And woke up sad; remembering:

Jesus was always leaving
Although I think He looked forward
He must have looked back
At His family
At His town
At His new found friends
At His enemies
Each time, although some followed
Until He was forced to leave
Life

Why was I sad?
I grew up the youngest in my family
It seems everyone was always leaving
Me
Some looking back; others not

As I grew older
I left, too
And rarely looked back

Life seems full of leavings
Friends and family
Go to live elsewhere
Or die
to play in heaven without me

You ask what
Day I would like to relive
I say 
None
I think of the play OUR TOWN
Where the newly deceased protagonist
Is given a day to relive
With advice to pick an ‘ordinary day’
And even then, 
She found it painful

Looking back on memories is enough
The mind tends to play tricks
And nothing is as it seemed
(Check family stories 
The ‘truth’ varies from person to person)

Reliving a day past
Might be disappointing
Or not
But different
Reliving anything would be impossible

The Dalai Lama looked back at his beloved country
Changing even as he looked
I don’t think he can ever go back; since there is 
No longer a ‘back’

I never met the Dalai Lama
In any lifetimes, I think
But I do remember Jesus
I watched Him leave many times
Sometimes I followed
But that last time
He went where I couldn’t follow
And I couldn’t keep Him here

So when you ask me what day
I would like to relive
I say none
How many goodbyes is one
Expected to survive?






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  1. Date: 10/24/2011 5:04:00 PM
    You penned this well, and did them justice with your introspective words. Love, Blessings, Vienna.