Rule and Chance

Like day and night
rule and chance are opposites
like light and dark
like red and green
like hot and cold
like wet and dry
like male and female.
Rule gives security,
geometry helps us to understand structure
or to construct a world in which
we can move without fear.
Chance is the unforeseen,
sometimes terrible,
sometimes pleasurable,
the encounter with a person
with whom you immediate establish
a connection of sympathy and love,
the explosion of a resolving idea
the discovery of a phenomenon.
Rule, born in the mind
is built on logic
everything is foreseen
with rule you can plan a program.
Chance is born from the climate
of environmental, social, and geographic conditions,
from sensory receptors.
An odor of eucalyptus,
the shape of a stone,
the rhythm of ocean waves…
Rule, alone, is monotonous,
chance, alone, yields unrest.
The Orientals say:
Perfection is beautiful but stupid,
you must understand it but destroy it.
The combination of rule and chance
is life, art
fantasy, balance.

BM, La regola e il caso (1983)
from Air Made Visible, by Bruno Munari

found a really nice copy of Air Made Visible by Bruno Munari in Jimbocho yesterday. Of course I did not buy it but was so moved by reading this poem.