Knots of Resistance

You know that extreme
big old knotty useless tree
Chuang Tzu praises

planted in empty-
ness? The knots in its twisted
limbs show the path of

least resistance is
not the easiest. They are
beautiful and true.

Author: Tom D'Evelyn

Tom D'Evelyn is a private editor and writing tutor in Cranston RI and, thanks to the web, across the US and in the UK. He can be reached at D'Evelyn has a PhD in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley. Before retiring he held positions at The Christian Science Monitor, Harvard University Press, Boston University and Brown University. He ran a literary agency for ten years, publishing books by Leonard Nathan and Arthur Quinn, among others. Before moving to Portland OR he was managing editor at Single Island Press, Portsmouth NH. He blogs at and other sites.

2 thoughts on “Knots of Resistance”

  1. lovely reflection in unfolding imagery on being and flourishing. The knotty tree image reminds me today of the tree of the Cross and of a different poem that for me takes on new significance read alongside: Good Friday at three/ a swarm of bees sets its heart/ on the apple tree (Les Murray, from Dog Fox Field)


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