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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Together for a Day

Today is Qixi (七夕), the 7th day of the 7th month according to the Lunar calendar. The separated lovers of this traditional Chinese tale can finally cross the sky and meet for this one day during the year. The story is one of love and repentance. Of course, the boy shouldn't have neglected watching the cows, and the girl shouldn't have stopped making the emperor his clothes altogether, but eternal separation seems like a very harsh sentence ... is it because people cannot stand seeing such happiness when it isn't theirs to have? A voice whispers within me that it is my life in the West that turns me to this emotional reading, but my Chinese upbringing reminds me that duty is first and foremost - transgressions must be accounted for and the price paid.

Nevertheless, parting is such sweet sorrow. I'd heard it said that each time there is bittersweet parting, a star burns out in the heavens. How sad, and how perfectly romantic.
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