Zhi Ruo and Her Flowers

Topics: Flowers

In the ancient Chinese T’ang dynasty, there was a young woman named Zhi Ruo. She lived in the flourishing city of Chang’an, where she lived with her husband, Hao Liang, who was a ceramic artist who sold his work in the city. They lived on the outskirts of Chang’an in a small, dilapidated home along the crowded street littered with dusty garbage. Before the sun rose every morning, Hao Liang would get up and go into the city to sell his ceramics until after the sun had settled down for the day and the moon shone brightly in the silky black sky.

During the day, it was Zhi Ruo’s job to keep the house in order and to watch over their two daughters, Ai Chen and Feng Mian. Zhi Ruo loved her children dearly, trying hard to become the very best mother that she could be. Determined to keep her children out of the overcrowded city, she took Ai Chen and Feng Mian out on a walk by a nearby river.

Along the river, beautiful flowers grew, their thin roots absorbing the water from the peaceful stream. Their soft petals danced in the breeze, dewdrops glistening in the sun. Zhi Ruo always brought the same things with them: a silk and paper scroll and a variety of oil paints. She would sit her children among the delicate flowers and teach them how to read and write. As the girls grew older, Zhi Ruo began teaching her children how to paint.

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They would paint the flowers by the river, using gentle brush strokes to make the pale pink plum blossom trees and the bright Chinese roses in the morning sun. After years of visiting the quiet riverbank, their paintings started improving more and more. Their brushstrokes looked flawless, each intricate little detail stood out in the colorful setting.

One morning, Zhi Ruo took Ai Chen and Fei Mian back to the river as usual with their worn art supplies. However, instead of seeing their elegant flowers, they were shocked to see that the once extraordinary view had been demolished. An army of men stood there, hauling massive amounts of building materials towards the trampled riverside. A bridge was being installed to allow people to travel across the river to reach a neighboring town. Ai Chen and Fei Mian began crying, scooping up the broken flowers. Zhi Ruo said nothing. She took the girls back home and collected all of the paintings that they had created together by the river. She became disheartened at the sight of them, so she took all of the paintings and buried them in their little yard. Months passed, and not a day went by when those flowers were forgotten. They believed that they would never see their blessed flowers again, but eventually, little buds began appearing in the yard. Soon, the yard had become filled with a combination of all of the once-adored flowers. Zhi Ruo and her children were overjoyed. Inspired, paintings started filling the house again. The first one had been titled, “柔和她的花”, or “Zhi Ruo’s Flowers,”.

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Zhi Ruo and Her Flowers. (2022, Jun 22). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/zhi-ruo-and-her-flowers/

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