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Friday, January 01, 2010

AT EASE


Lined coat, warm cap and felt slippers,
In the little tower, at the low window,
Sitting over the sunken brazier.
Body at rest, heart at peace; no need to rise early.
I wonder if the courtiers at the Western Capital know of these things or not?
                                                                                                           Po Chü-I (772 – 846)
Congratulating himself on the comforts of life after his retirement from office. (c844)
(Arthur Waley translation)
These lines, I have always felt, convey absolute comfort and contentment. (my feelings when taking early retirement!).
I dedicate them to you all as a wish for the coming year.

12 comments:

herhimnbryn said...

As it should be...

Kay McKenzie Cooke. said...

That is very cool.

Barrett Bonden said...

My mother had a book of Arthur Waley translations printed (rather preciously, I thought) on pale green paper. I have most of her important poetry but not that. Where did it go? Who, coming into contact with her posthumous possessions, might have thought it worth knocking off? I'd like to chat with that person.

As to the lined coat and sunken brazier, here I am in my computer room, wearing a fleece and scarf, the radiator turned off, doing my bit for Mother Earth. I sincerely hope that that the courtiers at the Western Capital (somewhat further west than Po-Chü-I was referring to, I suspect) are aware of my devotion.

pohanginapete said...

My feelings exactly, also. Best wishes for the new year, Avus.

Isabelle said...

Ah, wonderful. I can't imagine feeling that much at peace.

Maureen said...

Beautiful sentiment for 2010! Wishing you continued health and happiness, Avus.

Avus said...

Thank you for the greetings, folks.

BB:
That missing Arthur Waley could be quite valuable, apart from its personal connections. Interesting that it was printed on "precious" green paper. The Chinese consider green to be an unlucky colour. I doubt if you will ever see a traditional Chinese figure portrait wearing green.
Enjoyed the witty comparison. You in your computer room, Chu in his warm tower. I cannot imagine our "courtiers" at Westminster ever displaying similar devotion.

ArtPropelled said...

What a wonderful quote! My husband took very early retirement and its taking him quite a while to find his groove. (In my opinion it was too early for him to retire but illness forced him into it. He has made a miraculous recovery but can't go back since he was medically boarded and apparently that is that:-) Wish I could persuade him to get a bike!

herhimnbryn said...

I like the new layout colours.

Avus said...

HHnB:
I am experimenting. Have now upgraded to the later blogger in preparation for other changes.

Barrett Bonden said...

In fact the background colour of your most recent text boxes is remarkably reminiscent of the Arthur Waley pages.

herhimnbryn said...

Like this layout best of all...less is more.