Poetic for the day

Poetic for the Day

Two little poetics I have recently encountered

“All of Us”  by David Budbill

Out of the undifferentiated Tao come the ten thousand things:

the bug in the bird’s mouth,

the bird in the tree,

the tree outside the window,

the window beyond the chair,

the chair in the room,

the man in the chair

who has just risen from the chair and walked across the room to look out the window at the bird in the tree

with the bug in its mouth.

See how all of us, at our own and different speeds, return to the Tao.

Oh, let us all sing praises now for all of us, so briefly here.

see: David Budbill, Moment to Moment: Poems of a Mountain Recluse (Port Townsend:

Copper Canyon Press, 1999), 67.

And from the Tao Te Ching:

Recognize beauty and ugliness is born.

Recognize good and evil is born.

Is and Isn’t produce each other.

Hard depends on easy,

Long is tested by short,

High is determined by low,

Sound is harmonized by voice,

After is followed by before.23

Addiss and Lombardo, Tao Te Ching, 2.

and both are cited in

heather e. keith


Journal of Chinese Philosophy 36 (9) p69-84

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