Sunday, January 3, 2021

Su Shi Never Heard Back from Canliao

Even in winter, bare aspens look pretty—
Junipers, piñon, ponderosa the same
As in summer, now nicely decorated.

Sadly, the oaks are ugly. That’s all you know
In southern Utah, and all you need to know.
What you don’t need is more bland profundity.

Sword tip, charred stalk. You can never make music
By blowing on the edge, never harvest crops
From fields of scorched seeds. Really, this is basic

Contemplative living. The activist can
Condemn the quietist, but the quietist
Can’t complain. Not even in winter. The oak.

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