The immortals- so the story goes–
Once fought over the perfect pearl
Urged into light by the claws of the jade dragon,
Stroked into an eternal circle
By the beak of the golden phoenix.
But since none in heaven
Would loose their hold on it,
None could grasp it.
It slipped from their hands
And fell to earth to be
The water of our lives.
Thus each jewel of an earthly lake
Each cup of fresh water
Carries the sparkle of the sun,
Each river follows the forest of stars
From which the phoenix flies,
Navigates the caves from which
The dragon of morning wakes.
The ineffable Queen of Heaven
Mourns the jewel she loved:
But the farmer honors it in the voice
Of the tide that flows
Into water for the fields:
In the voice of the holy woman who took her family
Beneath the unbroken surface of time
Answering the riddles of heaven
For the sake of life on earth.