". . . little shall I grace my cause

In speaking for myself. Yet, by your gracious patience,

I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver . . ."

(William Shakespeare's Othello, I.iii.88-90)

Friday, December 5, 2008

For Elephant's Child

. . . and all my other sewing-inclined friends and readers. I stand in awe of the precision, patience, and art you bring to your craft. May God bless your work as you make the world a more beautiful and orderly place for those you love.

"Needle and Thread"
by Pan Zhao, A. D. 48-117
Tempered, annealed, the hard essence of autumn metals
Finely forged, subtle, yet perdurable and straight,
By nature penetrating deep yet advancing by inches
To span all things yet stitch them up together,
Only needle-and-thread's delicate footsteps
Are truly broad-ranging yet without beginning!
"Withdrawing elegantly" to mend a loose thread,
and restore to white silk a lamb's-down purity . . .
How can those who count pennies calculate their worth?
They may carve monuments yet lack all understanding.

1 comment:

Elephantschild said...

I didn't get a chance to comment on this the other day. Your email reminded me that I wanted to come back and read it again.

It's lovely. The first few lines mean even more when you know that some ancient Chinese textiles had real precious metals made into thread and stitched into the fabric.