731 | An Ancient Lotus Seed – Zhao Lihong, China

An Ancient Lotus Seed and a Ge Kiln Porcelain Jar —


An ancient idea, like an ancient lotus seed
hidden in the ground for thousands of years
Suddenly but gently activated by cool running water
sprouts a bashful tender bud

Ah, through the vicissitudes of the earth
you look so familiar and yet so unfamiliar
The moment the fallen leaves and blooms are gone with the wind
there comes a new lease of life floating with the current
The same face, and the same countenance
all unchanged ever since the time thousands of years ago
What encased in fashionable clothes
is the not yet unevolved skeleton of the body
In the buds, and among the stems and leaves
the dewdrops are glittering as in those days
The crowd are whirling and running in the wind
and in the rain the plants shaking their heads and waving
Anything changed to the world? Do all living beings
in heaven and earth still follow the old ways?

Zhao Lihong, China

Translation Zhou Wenbiao – Stanley Barkan