The Clouds Should Know Me by Now - Praise

Buddhist Poet Monks of China


224 pages, 6 x 9 inches


ISBN 9780861711437

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eBook Bundle (PDF, epub, mobi)


ISBN 9780861719532

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“Aranging yet intimate selection filled with scholarship, humor, and insight.”—Jane Hirshfield, author of Nine Gates

“Living so close to mind and to nature-in the place where these are not two-these ancient monk-poets present us with the eternal stuff of the poem: hills, crags, journeys, the solitary monk or nun, the gentle inexorable pace of the seasons, till we, too, begin to glimpse all this as our own original face.”—Diane di Prima, author of Loba and Pieces of a Song

“These Zen monks, writing between the T’ang Dynasty and the early twentieth century and until now virtually unknown in the West, are among the exemplars of one of the world’s richest and most influential literary traditions. The poems, translated by some of the most knowledgeable and talented scholars anywhere, are luminous and elegant in their simplicity, resonating with the wisdom of sages. This is an indispensable book.”—Sam Hamill, Copper Canyon Press

“The poems in this collection are masterpieces of indirectness. If haiku appeals to you, or Chinese landscape painting, or Zen, then this collection will also.”—Quest

“A welcome and tantalizing selection of verse from a tradition of poetry that remains largely untranslated. Reading the poetry of these Chinese monks one has a sense of what it is like to live solely amid nature. They tell it like it is, and their simple humility in the face of the wonders of the natural earth has much to teach us.”—Dharmalife

“If you have dog-eared copies of ‘Hiding the Universe’ or ‘Cold Mountain,’ or are enamored of the many contemporary poets who have taken inspiration from them, you will find ‘Clouds.’ to be a most welcomed friend.”—New Visions

“Reading these poets’ words, we can experience and achieve fresh insights into the ancient tradition of dream-like, lucent poetry. A poem from ‘Clouds.’ may be 1,000 years old and tell of the essence of a fleeting moment on the side of a sacred mountain in China, yet it speaks directly to the condition of the modern reader. ‘Clouds.’ could be featured in a display of Zen poetry, Buddhist thought. The Beats revisited, Chinese literature, or even modern poets. The poets consider tangible, ordinary objects in such a way that the objects seems to disappear, almost to dissolve back to their primal state, like clouds hovering over a mountain peak.”—New Age Retailer

“In such a hurly-burly time as ours... is it a comfort to sit down and spend half an hour meditating on the manifest world as seen through the eyes of Buddhist poet-monks.”—Pacific Reader, Spring 1999

“...[an] alluring anthology...these gentle verses present a quiet respect for ‘the ten thousand things’—Taoist shorthand for the earth’s numberless creatures... delights...”—Values & Visions

“...achingly beautiful poems...In their haunting simplicity, the poems collected here remind us of our oneness with the environment. Highly recommended...”—Library Journal

“The translations here pause and flow like the originals, with poet-painter Paul Hansen’s renderings of early Sung monks especially brilliant, outshining even the celebrated Burton Watson’s translations of the Tang poet Ch’i Chi. For that trip to your mountain hermitage or when simply hiding out in the backyard, you’ll find sure companionship in “The Clouds Should Know Me By Now.” —Brian Bruya,

“A thousand years of poetry has been tenderly gathered in from the wind and gently placed upon the is a breath of fresh, crisp, high-altitude air to our hearts.”—NAPRA ReVIEW

“...spare, beautiful meditations...”—Shambhala Sun

“refreshing... These translations will stand alongside those of Pound, Rexroth, Snyder and R.H. Blyth... a valuable addition to collections of Buddhist poetry. Recommended.”—Choice

“A rare collection of devotional poems by fourteen eminent Chinese Buddhist monks, this book resonates with the wisdom of the sages. Featuring the original Chinese as well as the English translations by some of the most knowledgeable and talened scholars, the poems are luminous and elegant in their expression of traditional spirituality. Profound spiritual truths lie hidden in these poems of friendship, family life, travels; poems with a breath of pine wind. They strike a note that is seasoned, deeply and resolutely secular. One thread that runs through all thse poems is that of a reverence for life: one’s own, one’s companions, one’s fellow-creatures! If you love the company of gifted poets, this is just the book for you.”—East And West Series