- It is pure and elegant, yet plain.
- It is strong and doesn't easily break.
- It has high tensile strength and bends to accommodate heavy loads.
- It bounces back once the heavy load is removed.
- It requires little care.
- It thrives even on marginal land, where few other crops will grow.
I would rather eat a meal without meat
than live in a place without bamboo.
Eating without meat makes you lose weight,
but living without bamboo makes you lose refinement.
When a person loses weight, it may be regained,
but when scholars lose refinement they are untreatable.
Others will find these words funny,
seeming lofty and at the same time, crazy.
Ruminate on this carefully if you're wise,
or you'll never ride a crane to Paradise.
~ Sū Shì (1037-1101)