Saturday, September 20, 2008

Lu Tong

Lu Tong was a poet of Tang Dynasty known for his lifelong study of the "Tea Culture". He was a peculiar man who never became an official, and is better known for his love of tea than his poetry. The poems that survive are about tea; a favorite being the "Seven Bowls of Tea":


The first bowl of tea moistens my throat,

the second breaks my loneliness, and

the third bowl racks my brains, bringing to light the texts of 5,000 volumes.

The fourth induces perspiration whereby all ills evaporate through my pores.

The fifth makes my muscles and bones feel light, and

the sixth links me to celestials.

Be careful when drinking the seventh bowl,

as it makes you feel as if a cool breeze were coming from your armpits.

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