Sunday, July 14, 2013

On Strawberries and Tigers

 photo from

This came to my inbox this morning, courtesy of Larry Robinson at Poetry Lovers Lists. It was written by Rebecca Del Rio and it said something to me today, as I sit here wrapping my head around this past week. Sometimes we get the strawberries, sometimes the tiger. I like this poet's reminder that tigers need love, too.

“There is a story of a woman running away from tigers. She runs and runs and the tigers are getting closer and closer. When she comes to the edge of a cliff, she sees some vines there, so she climbs down and holds on to the vines. Looking down, she sees that there are tigers below her as well. She then notices that a mouse is gnawing away at the vine to which she is clinging. She also sees a beautiful little bunch of strawberries close to her, growing out of a clump of grass. She looks up and she looks down. She looks at the mouse. Then she just takes a strawberry, puts it in her mouth, and enjoys it thoroughly..." a Zen story as told by Pema Chödrön

Between Tigers

When one is in the habit of Demands,
there are always Tigers, everywhere
hungry for attention. Strawberries

eaten in haste have little flavor, like
hurried love, pressured between
appointments and sleep.

The trick:

to know the Tiger, too, love it,
savor it so voraciously, the ferocity
softens and you see it was

no Demand after all, but rather
an entreaty, a roaring request,
please, please taste me, too.

          - Rebecca del Rio


  1. Love this, savor the ferocity and enjoy the moment ~ Happy week to you Sherry, from BC with love, smiles ~

  2. At first I thought you meant Rebekeh Del Rio:

    I think the tigers want to do the tasting.

  3. This poem is lovely. It's lovely meeting you too :)

  4. Neat teaching, like giving presents to difficult people we have to work with. I don't know about tigers--but this helped me relate to a coworker.

  5. I agree with Susan. This can help us with difficult people, and surely I'll never be in a position to be chased by tigers, because, as you know, I can't run!
    Luv, K

  6. Such wise strategy, Sherry. Very inspiring and deep piece of poetry..:)

  7. great story and great poem. Is a great personal lesson for me at the moment. Learnt through great words. So thank you on many levels.

  8. Nice message in this, Sherry.

  9. I love Pema Chödrön I have a large number of her books =) This poem is absolutely gorgeous as well!

  10. What a great message, Sherry. Thank you for this.


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