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My Other Pages

theWORDshop Homepage
It all starts here.

What Is a Renga?
Explore the fascinating world of renga, with examples.

Tan Renga
A linking pattern that looks like tanka and works like renga.

The Sijo
Korea's favorite lyric poetry form defined and illustrated.

Sijoforum Highlights
Selected from the Sijoforum.

Dueling Sijo and Links
What makes sijo tick? Also links to other sites for sijo. Send us your comments.

Sijo Masters in Translation
Selected from classic Korean masters and adapted into English.

The Fisherman's Calendar
The most famous work from the finest master of sijo, Yun Sun-do.

Florida State Poets Association, Inc.
This is THE gathering place for Florida's poets.

Larry Gross
Tallahassee, FL
United States

Sayings of the Wise Shang-ti


During Shang-ti's inception, his father was reading bad haiku and his mother was frightened by Edgar A. Guest peeping through the window. The product of a conflicted childhood, Shang-ti retreated to the highest point in Tallahassee (Macdonald's yellow arch) and proclaimed himself the Guru of Fast Food and Heartburn. Scrawling on the backs of Big Mac wrappers, he leaves this legacy.



drink deep the nectar
said the wise Shang-ti
but wash the cup


even the finest nectar
said the wise Shang-ti
leaves the cracked cup


even if you capture an angel
said the wise Shang-ti
fancy will provide imperfections


better an imperfect love
said the wise Shang-ti
than a perfect memory


if you remember her flaws
said the wise Shang-ti
they become yours


if your memory is weak
said the wise Shang-ti
speak loudly


if your memory is weak
said the wise Shang-ti
avoid strong drink


avoid all things
said the wise Shang-ti
stronger than your memory


a poor memory improves friends
said the wise Shang-ti
but multiplies enemies


memory complicates truth
said the wise Shang-ti
and simplifies hatred


if your truth makes enemies
said the wise Shang-ti
seek more truths


a treasured truth narrows the mind
said the wise Shang-ti
admitting others broadens it


if a whale swallows a man
said the wise Shang-ti
only the whale smiles


if a man swallows a whale
said the wise Shang-ti
neither is pleased


cracked congregations
said the wise Shang-ti
seek the sound of cracked bells


cracked bells
said the wise Shang-ti
fill cracked temples


the eye that has not cried
said the wise Shang-ti
cannot see beauty


a maiden yields but once
said the wise Shang-ti
but done well, it lasts


even the best coffee
said the wise Shang-ti
cannot choose its cup


is a woman philosophical about love
asks the wise Shang-ti
is the fish philosophical about water


I do not surpass the ancients
said the wise Shang-ti
I pursue them


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