Good Life

Fair Warrior

My daughter believes she is learning a martial art.

With her incomparable red hair

and freckled, fair face

above her snow=white gi

she’s as oriental as a strawberry sundae

eaten in a Cincinnati park on a sunny, summer Sunday.

Unless, of course, you catch a glimpse of

snow-capped Fujiyama

and allow your mind that stretch.

She is a tender Haiku in Spring,

with all the focus of a student trying to master

the brush-strokes of the tens of thousands of characters

of the Japanese alphabet.

Her cherry=blossom mouth is set with purpose

as she bows to the sensei and begins

the formal, proscribed moves of the kata.

The delicate, balanced maneuvers are a determined acknowledgement

of the ancestors.

She is a flourishing lotus, a blooming chrysanthemum,

a cedar growing from a rock.