Meditations on 70:
"Up, up, my feathers!— barefoot with joy"

By Peter Y. Chou,

Line in Poem Literary Sources
I travel around the sky on its four sides—
to know me, look inside your heart,
seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee
the first fathers dwell in that place.
Egyptian Book of the Dead, Ch. 70 (1250 BC)
Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Verse 70 (500 BC)
King David, Psalms 70.4 (1000 BC)
Book of Enoch, LXX.4 (circa 105 B.C.-64 B.C.)
Discard thy mortal body and come to pure ether—
the divine is everywhere, seen in stillness & peace.
Timely silence is mother of the wisest thoughts,
become earth, so you may grow colored flowers.
Pythagoras, Golden Verses, Verse 70 (500 BC)
Marsilio Ficino, On the Soul, Letter 70 (1499)
Saint Diadochos of Photiki, Philokalia, Text 70 (486)
Rumi, Daylight, Verse 70 (1273)
Spirit is the mystery of ten thousand things—
all water flow into the ocean, yet it is never full.
This universe is the product of illusion—
the water blushed, and turned to wine.
Ch'eng Hao, Selected Sayings Section 70 (1085)
Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 2, Verse 70 (400 BC)
Ashtavakra Gita, 18.70 (400 BC)
Aquarian Gospel of Jesus the Christ, Chapter 70.13 (1908)
A crow flies in heaven's sweetest air,
doing a long dance to the Cloudy Green.
Be on guard & receive blessed gift of prayer.
Let prayer become your beautiful Lover.
William Shakespeare, Sonnets LXX (1616)
James Joyce, Finnegans Wake, p. 70, lines 16-17 (1939)
Evagrios the Solitary, "On Prayer", Text 70 (399 AD)
Hafiz, The Gift Poem 70 "Your Beautiful Lover" (1389)
Good evening to you, beautiful deep!
and deep and deep and deeper let me drink
the wandering night, kiss of the rain—
the sea it was blue.
Tomas Tranströmer, Half-Finished Heaven, Poem 70 (2000)
A.E., Song and Its Fountains, Page 70 (1932)
Pablo Neruda, 100 Love Sonnets, Sonnet 70 (1959)
Kenneth Koch, Collected Poems, Poem 70 (2006)
A leap to the other shore to experiencing
the Absolute— unapproachable, ineffable,
blue triangular why of dreams blossoming
bleating sheep, the crowing cock at dawn.
Wei Wu Wei, Asked the Awakened, Chapter 70 (1963)
Paul Brunton, Notebooks, Volume 16, Part 4, 1.70 (1988)
e.e. cummings, 95 Poems, Poems 70 (1958)
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass, Poem 70 (1891)
I love you with what in me is unfinished,
work and rest are filled with music—
the wind of autumn blows in,
let beauty touch her wonder.
Robert Bly, Stealing Sugar, Poem 70 (2013)
Kabir, Songs of Kabir, LXX (1518)
Anna Akhmatova, Selected Poems, Poem 70 (1921)
e.e. cummings, Xaipe, Poems 70 (1958)
Seasons come dancing and pass away—
And what was lowly, Love raises on high
when every silence will not make a dream—
Up, up, my feathers!— barefoot with joy.
Rabindranath Tagore, Gitanjali, Verse 70 (1912)
Hadewijch of Antwerp, "Madness of Love", 70 (1200)
e.e. cummings, 73 Poems, Poems 670 (1963)
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Sonnet 70 (1941)

Meditation Notes to Poem:

This poem was written for my friend Cathy's 70th birthday on August 5, 2021.
For context of sources for the lines, consult my web page On Number 70 to see
how this poem was constructed. Despite the difference in space and time of the
composition of each line, what unites these writers quoted is the number 70.
    Writer's words appeared in verse 70, sonnet 70, chapter 70, line 70, or page 70.
The poem was arranged essentially in chronological order from "I travel around
the sky on its four sides" in Egyptian Book of the Dead, Ch. 70 (1250 B.C.) to Robert Bly's 70th poem "In the Month of May" from Stealing Sugar from the Castle (2013).

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© Peter Y. Chou,
P.O. Box 390707, Mountain View, CA 94039
email: (8-5-2021)