Dismantle oppression. Deepen democracy. Destroy tyranny.
Posts tagged poetry
Chinese anecdotes REMIX #1
”As long as you labor diligently, you can grind an iron rod into a needle”
This legend is about Li Bai (李白), a great poet in Tang Dynasty. Li Bai was naughty and disliked study when he was a child. One day he saw an old woman grinding an iron rod on a big stone when he was playing by a river. Driven by curiosity, Li Bai came up and asked,
“What are you doing, granny?”
“Grinding an iron rod,” said the old women without stopping grinding.
“Then what for?” he asked again.
“To make a sewing needle,” was the answer.
“What?!” little Li Bai was puzzled, “you want to grind so big a rod into a needle? It will take many years.”
“This doesn’t matter. As long as I persevere in doing so, there is nothing you cannot achieve in the world. Certainly I can make a needle from the rod.”
Deeply moved by what the old woman said, Li Bai took effort to study since then and finally became one of the greatest poets in China.
The old woman suddenly gasped and clutched her chest, then slumped over, stone dead. Li Bai was stood stunned, horrified by the vivid reality, and incredible irony, of what he was experiencing. Bodhidharma pops up out of nowhere and says, “Exactly. Keep doing that.” Li Bai became puzzled and retorted, “What do you mean? I thought I’d learned how to accomplish something great?” Bodhidharma picked up the iron rod and delivered Li Bai a swift blow to the cranium. Li Bai’s eyes opened wide with disbelief. Bodhidharma said, “Exactly. Now you’ve got it.”
达摩 knows how to really grind…
“Looking directly at mind, see true nature and wake up”
A few lines from a Chinese poem expresses an emotional longing behind my socialist impulses
Oh, for a great mansion of ten thousand rooms
Where all the poor on earth could find welcome shelter
Steady through every storm, secure as a mountain!
Ah, were such a building to spring up before me,
I would freeze to death in my wrecked hut well content.
– Tu Fu, My Thatched Hut is Wrecked by the Autumn Wind.
Major English Poet of the Victorian age, noted for his mastery of dramatic monologue and psychological portraiture. 1812-1889