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Japanese Tree Art


Beautiful Bonsai

Bonsai Tree

Oh beautiful bonsai tree!
Your branches encompass me,
With all your eternal peace and serenity.
Shapely and infinite through all the seasons,
Thriving with passion and love with divine reasons.
Giving shade to all your friends,
You bring new life with no end.
Standing tall with all your power,
Giving love with endless leaves of shower.
Terry Kaufman ~
Printed with permission from the author

Bonsai first appeared in China over a thousand years ago on a very basic scale,
known as pun-sai, where it was the practice of growing single specimen trees in pots.
These early specimens displayed sparse foliage and rugged, gnarled trunks which
often looked like animals, dragons and birds.
There are a great number of myths and legends surrounding Chinese bonsai,
and the grotesque or animal-like trunks and root formations are still
highly prized today.
Chinese bonsai come from the landscape of the imagination and images of fiery
dragons and coiled serpents take far greater precedence over images of trees-
so the two forms of this art are quite far apart.
With Japan's adoption of many cultural trademarks of China - bonsai was also
taken up, introduced to Japan during the Kamakura period (1185 - 1333
by means of Zen Buddhism - which at this time was rapidly spreading
around Asia.

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Laurie - November 2001