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Fragrant Knot (after visiting the Portland Classical Chinese Garden, 2006)

I am my own 4-sided hall with windows all around.

Passing nearby you are sure to see what is happening inside,

although you may not understand everything you see.

I am my own painted boat in misty rain

floating with my own small boatload of friends,

letting everyone on at once, but keeping just a few afloat at a time.

I am my own 10,000 ravines engulfed in misty clouds.

Rarely do you see all of me at once. Like the Chinese landscape artist,

I'm always revealing parts of myself--never the whole.

I am my own Garden of Awakening Orchids,

which just now happen to be in fragrant bloom. If you lean in close

enough and feel so inclined, you could listen to my fragrance.

I am my own fragrant knot, twisted and bent through the years,

growing more permanent and beautiful; the awakening orchid

and one of the 10,000 flowers that dares to blossom in the snow.

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