The Water Way
Endless traveler wanders, Earth’s lowly heir
Filling each space with no-mind, wholly
Myriad influence moves it on its way
Dwelling here and there, heaven scent
Choosing first, mountain weight to bear
Gravity speaks to places water knows.
Blue so deep, at first its surface is all you know
Until you realize its sum, from core to air
Shifts by season but its integrity bears.
Feel its resonance and see it as holy
Infuses all forms of life, wet spark sent
Behold, seen and unseen, the water way.
It goes about and does, without want to weigh
Its nature, no-mind engaged, no need to know
Cultivates with balming clarity; asks no cents
Meets the need then moves along, spirit is its heir
Without question, its intentions are pure and holy
Water does its job and goes, balance sheet bare.
Searching ripples for murk, none to bear
Sparkling rivulets and clear gurgles’ way
Birds, fish, and frogs immerse wholly
Quenched in life-affirming clarity, where no
Poison has found a home, misted air
Purifying mountain-stream water scent
No borders as it moves, serves all, asks no cent
Its purpose, bringing life, no agenda does it bear
Equanimity sings sate to each thirst’s heir
There are no scales with which it weighs
No bias in its flow as it shares without a know
Water understands that giving life to all is holy
Barriers skirted as it can change form wholly
Knows wax and wane from which it was sent
Pools face troubles with no repertoire of no
Currents, crystals, mists overcome each stone to bear
No hesitation nor refusal, no options does it weigh
Water finds a way to do, Mysterious Mother’s heir.
Water acts with wander, not know, and for that it is holy
Ten thousand things’ heir, Mysterious mother-sent
Everything and nothing, bare, wanders water on the way.
Notes: The concept for my poem comes from the Tao Te Ching/Dao De Jing Verse 8. The TTC/DDJ, by Lao Tzu/Laozi, is one the primary books that talks about philosophical taoism/daoism, which is very different than religious taoism/daoism. It is one of most translated books ever written. A mere 81 verses, each verse an ideal aspect outlined. Here, it suggests following the model set by the virtues of water.
Verse 8 is about Water.The following is the D.C.Lau translation.
Highest good is like water.
Because water excels in benefiting the myriad creatures without contending with them and settles where none would like to be, it comes close to the way.
In a home it is the site that matters;
In quality of mind it is depth that matters;
In an ally it is benevolence that matters;
In speech it is good faith that matters;
In government it is order that matters;
In affairs it is ability that matters;
In action it is timeliness that matters.
It is because it does not contend that it is never at fault.
Grace is the host of dVerse’s Open Link Night today.
This is also linked to the dVerse form of the moment, sestina. Today’s offering was created with the liberal use of homonyms, which worked very well for the form. “Homonym: Two words that sounds and (sometimes) are spelled the same but with different meanings (sometimes called homophones).”
Image link here
The link also has a wonderful TED talk on this verse as well.