One evening a thief visited Ryo-kan’s hut at the base of the mountain only to discover there was nothing to steal. Ryo-kan returned and caught him. “You have come a long way to visit me,” he told the prowler, “and you should not return empty-handed. Please take my clothes as a gift.” The thief was bewildered. He took the clothes and slunk away. Ryo-kan sat naked, watching the moon. “Poor fellow,” he mused, “I wish I could have given him this beautiful moon.” This story may be an interpretation of an account mentioned by Ryo-kan in a haiku:

The thief left it behind:
the moon
at my window.

More: The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry