An Interpretation by David Breeden, Steven Schroeder, and Wally Swist

This is a multi-step collaborative translation that began with the Chinese put into English, then the three scholar-poets worked on the language of their first step in translation to make better available to modern readers the experience of a poem through an integration of form and meaning. Without such an integration, the aesthetic experience of reading a poem is at best only partial, at worst not a meaningful experience at all.

This new Daodejing is both the old one with all its majesty and a new one offered in 21st-century American English as wielded by true experts: poets who will not and cannot divorce meaning from form.

Order from any bookstore, local or online. This title is also available from Fleur Fine Books of Galveston, Texas. 

About the Poets

David Breeden

David Breeden is a poet and Unitarian Universalist minister in Minnesota. Recent poetry collections include Raging for the Exit: A Commonplace Book (with Steven Schroeder), Wipf & Stock, 2012, and They Played for Timelessness (with Chips of When), Virtual Artists Collective, 2012.

Steven Schroeder

Steven Schroeder is a poet and visual artist based in Chicago. Recent poetry collections include A Water Planet, flying island books, 2014 and Raging for the Exit: A Commonplace Book (with David Breeden), Wipf & Stock, 2012. More at stevenschroeder.org.


Wally Swist’s books of poetry include Huang Po and the Dimensions of Love, Southern Illinois University Press, 2012 and Velocity, Virtual Artists Collective, 2013. Garrison Keillor recently read a poem of his on the daily radio program The Writer’s Almanac. More at wallyswist.com.