My loving mother, thread in hand,
Mended the coat I have on now,
Stitch by stitch, just before I left home,
Thinking I might be gone a long time.
How can a blade of young grass
Ever repay the warmth of the Spring sun?
- Meng Jia, translated from the Chinese by Mingfong Ho
I looked up, and discovered February had already slipped through my hands.