Saturday, 14 March 2015

Drinking Chrysanthemum Tea

Everytime I go to Wetland Park in early spring, the experience feels like drinking chrysanthemum tea.

It was morning and most of the sky was yellow, some of the softest blue. The sky felt like it had a layer of parchment paper which softly diffused the sunlight.

The pungent smell of the surrounding marshes made me stop and raise my head towards the sky. I stood quietly and closed my eyes to take it all in, to savour the moment. The cool, moist, grass-smell filled my nostrils and stirred within me happy memories. The wind was gentle, like hands as they caress. The sea grass and river rippled and swayed when the same wind breathed over them. Beyond, the scattered clouds are resting on the bosoms of hills. 

Strange how everything below can be chaotic while above the sky is peace, sweet yellow gentleness like freshly brewed chrysanthemum tea which has been gently steeped in hot water.

I will leave you with a poem, written by Chinese poet, Tao Qian.  

Tao Qian : 365-427 CE
I’ve made my home among people,
yet I hear no noise of cart horses.

You ask how am I able to do that?
A heart in a far place seeks its own.

I pick chrysanthemums from the east hedge
and gaze, at leisure, on South Mountain.

In this mountain air, day is beautiful — and night too;
birds fly out, then return together.

These facts all have a clear meaning;
I want to argue for my points, but already forget to speak.

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