Note with a Gift -Translation by Katherine Silver + Robin Myers

for Margaret Feigin

I give you this lotus, as simple as a flower.
It is a flower.
It appeared in the water at the park within some circles, shadowy vegetal rhythms
out of the slow layer of detritus, something
like a fallen black mass: potential flowers. At first it was a bud, closed
coffer, unopened fingers—then
it slowly offered its perfection.
I pulled it toward me with a stick, a modest branch, hunter of symbols.
It is a symbol.
Put some sugar in the water,
place the lotus in the vase. And make sure it has some sun so it can live a little longer,
it is just a flower.
It will close at night—it’s tiring, being so much light, but the air is young, the year
begins anew, and tomorrow it will open again
more weakly, more
finally. And when it does

make the flower unfurl
in flames:
star symbol,
lotus perfection.

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