Translation of poem:
The Plum Blossom
I thought I saw snow on this cold wintry day.
Flowers of White glowing against the dark wall.
Not until the scent of blossom reached me, did I know the Plum thrived one season more.

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In traditional Chinese culture, the plum tree symbolizes resolve, longevity and optimism because it blossoms only after a snow fall on  cold winter days while other flowers wither.  When I was in China, I saw plum flowers very often, thus I neglected to recognize its significant meaning over the years. However, my first winter in the US, in the year 2007, reminded me of its unique characteristic and specific meaning.

The winter of 2007 seemed to be the coldest winter I had ever experienced in my life. Everything started from zero: the temperature was zero, my American experience was zero and the number of my friends was zero. Fortunately, I met my knitting teacher, Julia, who called me a knitting prodigy. She was surprised that I could make almost anything I wanted when I picked up the yarn and the needles the very first time. Before that, I didn’t know that I could knit or crochet because I thought this craft belonged to my mother’s or grandmother’s generations. Actually, my knitting talent made me happy; more importantly, I was much happier because  I had made many good friends through these knitting activities. Since then, the knitting and crochet technique has became a significant part of my life. I am a Rootless Plum Tree, growing up from air in the cold winter.

--by Yuanyuan Li--Winter in 2008