Over a thousand years later, I write out one of his lines in a notebook,
The peach blossom follows the moving water,
And watch the October darkness gather against the hills.
All night long the river of heaven will move westward while no one notices.
The distance between the dead and the living
is more than a heartbeat and a breath.
—Charles Wright, closing strophe to “Portrait of the Artist with Li Po” from The Southern Cross (Random House, 1981)