Fond Interests

October 8th, 2008

These lines were written in the latter half of the sixteenth century by the Chinese poet Chen Jiru.

Fond Interests

Cool breeze and beautiful moon.

Vase of flowers.

Tea, bamboo shoots, oranges and tangerines, all in season.

The host not being formal.

Stretch under the sun.

Peace in the world.

Talking to high monks in the snow.

Getting up from sleep.

Recovering from illness.

Freely displaying objects but slowly putting them away.

And thanks to Lydia Minatoya for quoting it as the epigraph to her wonderful memoir, Talking to High Monks in the Snow.

Anybody want to add anything to the list?

Here’s something beautiful by Chen Jiru.

8 Responses to “Fond Interests”

  1. greg smith Says:

    my dogs running on the beach

    persimmons ripening on our tree

    the squirrel drinking from the birdbath

    the bobcat sitting on the deck

    Topanga days, green everywhere

    Topanga nights, the stillness

  2. John Says:

    A taste that pleases.
    A touch that soothes.
    Tears that dry and a breaking smile.
    Looks of recognition and joy.
    A welcome hand, a firm embrace, a goodbye far away.

  3. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    My, my — These are great. Small blessings, the ones we sometimes don’t even notice at the time, are probably what make life worthwhile. The giant blessings that break over us like a wave are exhilarating, but few and far between. Anything — like the poem, like your responses — that can help make us aware of the small, everyday blessings, is to be read and remembered. Not to sound corny, but these little lights can keep the dark away in the hardest times.

  4. Cynthia Mueller Says:

    an Eskimo kiss from a child
    biting into a tomato in the garden
    reaching the itch in the middle of your back
    a purple crocus in the snow
    the tiny pause before a first kiss
    tiny fingers curled around my pinkie
    the first five notes of Stairway to Heaven

  5. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Go, Cynthia –

    Great stuff. Great stuff from all of you. I’ll try a few myself either later today or early tomorrow.

  6. bets Says:

    opening a new book
    kids’ laughter
    the last run of the day
    a quiet house

  7. Sharai Says:

    All of these are precious, I would only add, nursing a loved one back to health

  8. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Bets and Sharai —

    These are wonderful. What a nice group of people stop by this blog.

    I would add three more:

    Finding something you’ve stopped looking for.

    Seeing the person you love for the first time each day.

    Any temple in any jungle, anywhere.

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