kaaSHTHaM hi mathnan labhate hut'aasham,
bhuumiM khanan vindati c'aapi toyam:
nirbandhinaH kiM cana n'asty'asaadhyam,
nyaayena yuktaM ca kRtaM ca sarvam.
For he obtains the sacrificial fire
who keeps on twirling the firestick,
And he gets to water
who keeps on digging down into the earth:
Constancy of effort makes nothing impossible,
And everything doable,
when linked to the means-whereby principle.
The first line can be seen as having a spiritual or religious connotation, with the allusion to the sacrificial fire, as opposed to water. Master Dogen uses water as a symbol of that which -- whether or not it is regarded as holy -- is, in its materiality, vital to all real life. "Do the buddha-ancestors have water in their practice-places?", Master Dogen asks in The Sutra of Mountains and Water. Answer: Yes, they do, in one hundred cases out of one hundred.
For the meaning of the third and fourth lines, you could ask a US marine -- I am thinking in particular of one who shaves his head, is zealous about sitting in lotus, and has at least scratched the surface of FM Alexander's egg; he goes by the number USMC 0681.
kaaSHTHa: wood, log
mathna: whirl round, rub a firestick
labhate = 3rd person singular of LABH: obtains, gains
asha: enjoy, consume
hut'aasham: lit. 'consumer of the sacrifice' = fire
bhuumi: earth, ground
khana: dig up or into
vindati = 3rd person singular of VID: finds, gains.
nirbandha: persistence, perseverance
nirbandhin: with perserverance, being persistent
nirbandhinaH: ablative case, from being persistent; or genitive case, to one who has perseverance, for the man who is persistent
kiM cana: [with negative] by no means, in no way
asti: there is, it is
asaadhyam: not achieved
nyaayena = instrumental case of nyaaya: the [noble] principle, the [noble] plan, the proper manner of action, the proper method
yukta: [with a word in the instrumental case] yoked or harnessed to, being in conjunction with
ca...ca: and also, and besides, and indeed
kRta: done, made
sarva: all, everything
For by rubbing wood long enough a man obtains fire, and by digging the earth deep enough he obtains water; nothing is impossible of achievement to the man of perserverance. Everything that is undertaken by the proper method is thereby necessarily carried out with success.
For one obtains fire by rubbing the wood,
and one finds water by digging the earth;
There is nothing that is impossible
for the man who is persistent;
Everything can be accomplished,
when it is done the proper way.