Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Ideals of Life (A Few Words for Wednesday)

In his book The Interior Carmel: The Threefold Way of Love, John C.H. Wu ends the chapter on "fraternal charity" with a short poem he composed. I read elsewhere that he was a poet too, but this is the first time I've seen one of his originals. I'll let him introduce it to you,

Last year I hit upon a poem when I was waiting for the bus. I have outlined these (as) my ideals of life. Although I myself am very far from attaining these ideals, I think you may profit by the poem.

Ideals of Life

To see the cosmos in a flower;
To live Eternity in an hour;
To find the Transcendent in the ordinary,
John C.H. Wu
And the One in the many;

To drink the Tao in the cup of duty;
To realize that goodness is beauty.
To taste peace in activity,
And joy in humility,

To meet Christ in your neighbor,
To feel refreshed in labor.
To be sober and drunk at the same time--
Sublimely human and humanly sublime.

Thanks John! You have a way with words.