Tao Te Ching #1: “A way can be a guide, but not a fixed path”

Ted Hughes: 12 Essential Poems Human Voices Wake Us

Please consider supporting Human Voices Wake us by clicking here. You can also support this podcast by going to wordandsilence.com and checking out any of my books. Tonight I read twelve essential poems from the British poet Ted Hughes (1930-1998). They can all be found in his Collected Poems (smaller selections of his poetry include Selected Poems 1957-1994 and A Ted Hughes Bestiary). In this episode I also read from The Letters of Ted Hughes. The poems are: Wind (from the Hawk in the Rain, 1957) Six Young Men (from the Hawk in the Rain, 1957) Crow's Song About God (from Crow, 1970-71) “I skin the skin” (from Gaudete, 1977) A Green Mother (from Cave Birds, 1978) Bride and Groom Lie Hidden for Three Days (from Cave Birds, 1978) Cock-Crows (from Remains of Elmet, 1979) Rain (from Moortown Diary, 1979) February 17th (from Moortown Diary, 1979) Four March Watercolours (from River, 1983) October Salmon (from River, 1983) Life After Death (from Birthday Letters, 1998) This is followed by a reading Hughes gave of his poem, “October Salmon.” Other episodes on Hughes include one where he discusses privacy for his family in the wake of Sylvia Plath’s posthumous fame; another where he discusses how he discovered poetry; and another, much longer episode of readings (4.5 hours) from Hughes’s poetry. Any comments, or suggestions for readings I should make in later episodes, can be emailed to humanvoiceswakeus1@gmail.com. I assume that the small amount of work presented in each episode constitutes fair use. Publishers, authors, or other copyright holders who would prefer to not have their work presented here can also email me at humanvoiceswakeus1@gmail.com, and I will remove the episode immediately. — Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/humanvoiceswakeus/support
  1. Ted Hughes: 12 Essential Poems
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A way can be a guide, but not a fixed path;
names can be given, but not permanent labels.
Nonbeing is called the beginning of heaven and earth;
being is called the mother of all things.
Always passionless, thereby observe the subtle;
ever intent, thereby observe the apparent.
These two come from the same source but differ in name;
both are considered mysteries.
The mystery of mysteries
is the gateway of marvels.

– Thomas Cleary

 

The way that becomes a way
is not the Immortal Way
the name that becomes a name
is not the Immortal Name
no-name is the maiden of Heaven and Earth
name is the mother of all things
thus in innocence we see the beginning
in passion we see the end
two different names
for one and the same
the one we call dark
the dark beyond dark
the door to all beginnings

– Red Pine

 

The Way as “way” bespeaks no common lasting Way,
The name as “name” no common lasting name.
Absent is the name for sky and land’s first life,
Present for the mother of all ten thousand things.
Desire ever-absent:
Behold the seed germs of all things;
Desire ever-present:
Behold their infinite course.
Forth together come the two
As one and the same
But differ in name.
As one, a dark recess
That probed recedes
Past that portal whence
The milling seed germs teems.

– Moss Roberts

 

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