[Lotus Seedpod Men]

In water-caltrop raiment clad, with belt of floating-heart,
you dwell in faerie wonderlands.
Such lush jade-green, your perfumed hue –
tho’ wind may cease, its fragrance yet expands.
Egrets’ reflections grace the pond no more,
only the autumn wind’s soughing, a soughing so glum.
Alone, but for the rush flower, you bear the nocturne wake
and await the heavy dew that with the morn with come.
With greasy make-up swept away,
true character takes form!
Red garments loud, stripped off, display
strength of a subtler norm!
Live up to what Lianxi said:
stand up “pure, straight and tall”.
Follow not the withered leaves
in chilly ponds to fall!

-Lu Xun, 1900

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