Heron parts the reeds, two
handfuls of light and air. Ink on
water. Divide the moon into
daytime and dusk. The mind is
a void, is the distance between
now and heaven. Become mist,
here where you stand, mist over
still water like glass. Reflect deeper.

Heron takes flight, wind moves
among lilies. The body is a shadow
like any other. Is it not tethered
to the soul? Does it not follow
the mind as a shadow follows the sun?
Become breath, escape your lungs
like smoke; like fire, fill the space
between light and darkness, and darkness
will be a road towards heaven if you seek it.

great blue heron (kevin fleming)

Great blue heron by Kevin Fleming

Note: Written for an assignment on figurative language. Wuxia is a genre of Chinese fantasy, based on martial arts, honour, revenge, and loyalty. Here, the values and forms of Chinese swordplay philosophy provide a play on movement, meditation, and spiritual journey.