King Wu Wen presented me
with a hundred tortoises.
I fed the flesh to a hundred beggars,
and the shells I used for divination —
cast them into fire and read the cracks
the fire made along their backs.
Nothing furthers, they said. Also,
Every ending is a new beginning.
“Such nonsense!” I spat,
and beheaded the cat.
But what can one expect from empty tortoise shells?
Or old wise men like King Wu Wen?