By Peter Y. Chou,

Line in Poem Literary Sources
Let there be a firmament
high above all the earth—
most bountiful refreshment
dining along the river banks.
Moses, Genesis I.6 (97th word: firmament)
King David, Psalms 97.9 (1023 BC)
Rig Veda, VII.97.7 (1500 BC)
Homer, Odyssey, VI.97 (800 BC)
It is mind that produces order,
knows nature of the Uncreated.
The sage is not distracted,
always steady and easy.
Plato, Phaedo 97c (360 BC)
Buddha, Dhammapada VII.97 (240 BC)
Ashtavakra Gita, XVIII.97 (400 BC)
Patanjali, Yoga Sutra, Aphroism 97 (200 BC)
Practice pure prayer & fear no evil—
Peace! it is till the break of the morning—
hidden wealth will bring you great joy
leading to purification of the mind.
Evagrios the Solitary, On Prayer, Text 97 (399 AD)
Mohammed, Holy Koran, Chapter 97 (7th century AD)
St. John of Karpathos, For Monks in India, Text 97 (680 AD)
Santideva, Bodhicaryavatara, V.97 (700 AD)
Seek the Way with an open mind,
shine out like the Sun and stars.
There is no freedom or bondage
when we realize the Self God within.
Chu Hsi, Chin-ssu lu Section 97 (1175)
Marsilio Ficino, On the Soul, Letter 97 (1499)
Wei Wu Wei, The Tenth Mab, Ch. 97 (1966)
Subramuniya, Merging with Siva, Lesson 97 (1999)
The world at best is a children's game—
the sage knows it's a reflection of Brahmin
not contained in the earth nor in all heavens
is her sweet smile inspiring my vision & song.
Su Tung-p'o, Poem 97 "Drinking Wine" (1092)
Swami Chinmayanananda, Say Cheese! (2004)
Rumi, Rumi Daylight, Verse 97 (1994)
Dante, 97th Canto: Paradiso 30.25-30 (1321)
The wood where fortune smiled on me—
a million suns are ablaze with light,
whole realm of darkness now turned bright
whose dwelling is the light of setting suns.
Pearl Poet, Pearl, Line 97 (1400)
Kabir, Songs of Kabir, Verse 97 (1448)
Wu Ch'eng-en, Journey to the West, Ch. 97 (1518)
William Wordsworth, "Tintern Abbey" Line 97 (1798)
Renounce your will, and yours are joys—
With joy— but not in chains to pine.
The rainbow never tells me
Death is perhaps an intimate friend.
Goethe, Lyrist: 100 Poems, Poem 97 (1832)
Lord Byron, "Prisoner of Chillon" Lines 97 (1816)
Emily Dickinson, 97th Poem (1859)
Emily Dickinson, 97th New Poem (1876)
Earth is no use anymore to the wanderer:
world moves, but earth's stone is unshaken.
A drink that bubbles in empty glasses—
some luminous thing has happened—
Pablo Neruda, 100 Love Sonnets, Sonnet 97 (1960)
Poem 97, Collected Poems of Kenneth Koch (2002)
Tomas Tranströmer, Selected Poems, Poem 97 (1987)
Robert Bly, Stealing Sugar from the Castle, Poem 97 (2013)
whatever must be learned— Sunflower
Burning Bush, Evergreen Wanderer,
Weeping Crescent Moon—
within the body a lake of bliss.
Kay Ryan, 97th poem "Learning" in The Best of It (2010)
Numerology: "Sunflower Burning Bush" = 97, "Evergreen
Wanderer" = 97, "Weeping Crescent Moon" = 97
Jane Hirshfield, Women in Praise of the Sacred (1994)
  cites in 97th poem, Mirabai's "body is the ocean" (1565)

Meditation Notes to Poem:

This poem was written in honor of my Cornell Professor Harold A. Scheraga's
97th birthday on October 18, 2018. He was my doctorate advisor in Physical Chemistry of Macromolecules (1963-1970). For the context of sources for the lines, consult my web pages On Number 97 on composition of each line. What unites these writers quoted is the number 97. That is, the writer's words appeared in verse 97, sonnet 97, chapter 97, line 97, or page 97. This poem was arranged essentially in chronological order from King David's Psalms 97 (1023 BC) and Hymn 97 in Rig Veda (1500 BC) to Pablo Neruda's "Love Sonnet 97" (1960) and Poem 97 in Robert Bly's Stealing Sugar from the Castle (2013). The final stanza are phrases whose numerology add to 97, concluding with Mirabai's insight cited in Jane Hirshfield's Women in Praise of the Sacred (1994). Much joy composing this.

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© Peter Y. Chou,
P.O. Box 390707, Mountain View, CA 94039
email: (10-18-2018)