The Chinese Ancients

I have had a dry spell the last few days, and so have dug into my archive for material for my post. This poem I wrote a few years ago, but it spoke to me this morning as I have been wrestling with writing about that most perfect symbol of the monstrosity of power, Ivan the Terrible.

The Chinese Ancients

The ancient Chinese poets

Observed their world

As rulers do,

Detached and regretful,

Knowing action’s bite.


They fled the courts

Who abused their gifts,

As rulers do,

Making words into tools,

Numbers into debts.


In exile, in refuge

They revealed secrets,

As rulers never do,

That endure defeat

To humble the governing will.


Jeff Rich


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