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Elizabeth Reninger

"... the reins of the nine dragons"

By January 1, 2009

Follow me on:

I take my whip and grasp the reins of the nine dragons,
Ride up to visit the Jade Emperor's gardens.
Great Emptiness and its energy of ninefold mystery
Transform as patterned through all three numina.

Above I join the tower of mysterious morning light
Where all bodies and lives receive their first prime essence.
Then I move on to the Hall of Great Cloud's Glow,
Let my glance flow on to years infinite.

Divine light penetrates even the passes of deep darkness,
Purifies the womb, restores the body's strength.
We cherish and we grieve for the five sons of the turbid
And let our lives flow along with the morning's newly born.

The above passage is from the Santian Zhengfa Jing (Scripture on the Proper Law or the Three Heavens), excerpted from Livia Kohn's The Taoist Experience. The poem was inspired, during a "feast with the Immortals," by the music of a zither "stringed with cloud and jade." It seemed like an excellent way to begin the (Gregorian) New Year: letting "our lives flow along with the morning's newly born ..."

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