I must claim the quoter’s privilege of giving only as much of the text as will suit my purpose, said Tan-Chun. If I told you how it went on, I should end up by contradicting myself!
All, insubstantial, doomed to pass,
As moonlight mirrored in the water
Or flowers reflected in a glass.
Pages full of idle words
Penned with hot and bitter tears:
All men call the author fool;
None his secret message hears.
One day, when spring has gone and youth has fled,
The Maiden and the flowers will both be dead.
Truth becomes fiction when the fiction’s true;
Real becomes not-real when the unreal’s real.