The Dudefathers were fellers so much smarter than ourselves,
That we are like children who wander in the middle of a movie.
Because we are out of our element, we can only dig their style:
Good and thorough, like a worthy fucking adversary,
Bright and flowering like the young men at Khe Sanh and Lan Doc,
Ingenious, like a Swiss fucking watch,
Dark, like a black steer’s tookus on a moonless prairie night,
Genuine, like Miller Genuine Draft,
Open, like the most modestly-priced receptacle,
Yet opaque, like a White Russian cocktail.
Those who can take ’er easy while dealing with real reactionaries,
And remain calm while goons micturate on their rug,
Are able to safeguard their basic freedoms.
So everything works out pretty good for them.
Tao Te Ching: 15
The ancient sages were masters of making their way in the world.
Since we can scarcely comprehend the depths of their understanding,
All we can do is reflect on their outward attitude:
Careful, like a man crossing a frozen stream,
Vigilant, like someone surrounded on all sides by threat,
Courteous, like an honored guest,
Yielding, like thawing ice,
Unassuming, like uncarved wood,
Receptive, like an empty valley,
Yet incomprehensible as a turbid pool.
Muddy water once settled becomes clear,
And settled water once again becomes agitated.
He who can remain constant and avoid the vicissitudes of excess,
Avoids becoming buffeted by changing currents,
And naturally cleaves to the path which cuts right through.