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Memoirs From a Burn 2019.08.26 (Arrival)

Metamorphosis 

Four men got in a discussion. 

Each one said:

“Who knows how 

To have the Void for his head

To have Life as his backbone

And Death for his tail?

He shall be my friend?”


At this they all looked at one another

Saw they agreed

Burst out laughing

And became friends


Then one of them became ill

And another went to see him.

“Great is the Maker,” said the sick one,

“Who has made me as I am!”


“I am so doubled up

My guts are over my head;

Upon my navel

I rest my cheek;

My shoulders stand out

Beyond my neck;

My crown is an ulcer

Surveying the sky;

My body is chaos

But my mind is in order.”


He dragged himself to the well,

Saw his reflection, and declared,

“What a mess

He has made of me!”


His friend asked:

“Are you discouraged?”


“Not at all! Why should I be?

If he takes me apart

And makes a rooster

Of my left shoulder

I shall announce the dawn.

If he makes me a crossbow

Of my right shoulder

I shall procure roast duck.

If my buttocks turn into wheels

And if my spirit is a horse

I will hitch myself up and ride around

In my own wagon!


“There is a time for putting together

And another time for taking apart.

He who understands

This course of events

Takes each new state

In its proper time

With neither sorrow nor joy.

The ancients said: ‘the hanged man

Cannot cut himself down.’

But in due time Nature is stronger

Than all his ropes and bonds

It is always so.

Where is there a reason

To be discouraged?”

-Chuang Tzu (translation: Thomas Merton)

#themanburnsinsixdays #burningman2019 #metamorphosis 

Cover Art/Ticket Art: Shawn Cook

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