moral compass

“I can’t imagine an immoral person bothering with poetry," [Lucien Stryk] shoots back, “and by ‘immoral,’ I’m not talking about trivialities. I mean in the largest sense, in the way the person relates to the world, his spirit. In the poets that affect me, there is always that element of desire and hope.”

I thirsted for seasons,
dragging a leaden shadow
into nothingness. Now,

as fire meets ice, I see.

[from “Lake Down”]

—Lucien Stryk, quoted by Susan Porterfield in “Poetry and Lentil Soup: A Profile of Lucien Stryk,” the afterword of Where We Are: Selected Poems and Zen Translations (Skoob Books, LTD, London, 1997) by Lucien Stryk

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