Perhaps the purpose of leaves is to conceal the verticality of trees which we notice in December as if for the first time: row after row of dark forms yearning upwards. And since we will be horizontal ourselves for so long, let us now honor the gods of the vertical: stalks of wheat which to the ant must seem as
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In the Happo-En Garden, Tokyo
The way a birthmark on a woman’s face defines rather than mars her beauty, so the skyscrapers— those flowers of technology— reveal the perfection of the garden they surround. Perhaps Eden is buried here in Japan, where an incandescent koi slithers snakelike to the edge of the pond; where a black-haired Eve-san in the petalled folds of a kimono once showed her silken body to the sun, then picked a persimmon and with a small bow bit into it.