around my arm
his only constant
in a world
Lying on a high seat in the south study,
We have lifted the curtain–and we see the rising moon
Brighten with pure light the water and the grove
And flow like a wave on our window and our door.
It will move through the cycle, full moon and then crescent again,
Calmly, beyond our wisdom, altering new to old.
. . .Our chosen one, our friend, is now by a limpid river–
Singing, perhaps, a plaintive eastern song.
He is far, far away from us, three hundred miles away,
And yet a breath of orchids comes along the wind.
translated by Witter Bynner & Kiang Kang-hu
you would appear
on this full moon
and as I rise
the moon fading
like your ghost
of what was
Another invitation for a Full Moon Social from Jeff Schwaner & his old pal Mei Yao-ch’en.
Last night in the bar a girl Bill and I were talking to especially stands out in my head. A “hippie” type. (Sorry, but that’s what words are for) Very sincere in what she believed in. But what she believed in was totally fucked up. But like I said, very sincere about it all.
It always bothers me, this combination. Of sincere and wrong. It doesn’t seem fair. Sincere should always be right.
Living is not a joking matter:
you have to live with great seriousness
. . . . . . . .like a squirrel, for instance,
that is to say, without expecting anything outside or beyond living,
. . .which means, you must devote yourself fully to living.
You have to take living seriously,
in such a way, to such an extent
that, for instance, your hands tied behind you, your back to the wall,
or wearing think spectacles and a white robe,
in a laboratory,
you must be willing to die for other people,
even those whose faces you have never seen,
although nobody has forced you to do this
and although you know that living
. . .is the most beautiful and the most genuine thing.
That is to say, you have to take living so seriously
that, for instance, even at age seventy, you will plant olive trees
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