The Tao



The masters of the Way

In the old days knew deeply

The elusive mysteries, yet


They shuddered like those

Crossing an icy stream;


They stayed awake like

Those afraid of neighbors;


They were serious, as if

At dinner with the powerful;


They were pliable, like

Melting ice; plain like

Unworked wood; cloudy

Like muddy water; empty

Like a mountain gorge.


Muddy water left still

Will clear; things at rest

Can be moved again.


Those who practice this way

Of doing The Way stay empty,

Looking worn and unfinished.


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