a deep drawn breath
and a step that glides

move like the wind
stand as a mountain high

to grasp a scabbard
like roots of a tree
willing to bend
in a gusting breeze

to rush with the force
of a tidal wave
at the speed
of a serpents strike
with as little movement
as a blink of an eye

To stand like stainless stone
and flow like a river
holding patience
like that of a praying mantis

Look a dragon in the eyes
and circle a tiger’s stance
with the grace of a crane
rise above the battle’s dance

first extend a flower of thought
and see how it is held
if it is handed back crumpled
have compassion for ignorance
although the still pond is rippled

and if thy enemy
should advance
like a lion downs a meal
let them feel steel


be all over them, like snow on a mountain high

dance of the samurai

by Art Campbell