Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tao Qian Poem

I Stop Drinking

My home is where the town stops.
Carefree and alone, I stop then walk
then stop and sit in the shade of tall trees.
My path stops within my brushwood gate.
The best taste is to stopper my mouth with garden vegetables.
My greatest joy stops with my youngest son.
All my life I have not stopped drinking.
I'm never happy when I stop.
If I stop at night I cannot sleep well;
if I stop in the morning, I cannot get up.
Every day I tried to stop drinking,
but my energy flow stopped and became disordered.
I only knew that abstinence stops pleasure
without knowing that to stop has benefits.
Now I truly realize how good it is to stop drinking,
and am really going to stop this morning.
I will stop from now on,
till I reach the Isle of Immortals where the sun stops
till my old face stops and a clear face returns.
I won't be satisfied till I've stopped for ten thousand years.

- Tao Qian (c. 365-427 CE)