Wednesday, August 24, 2011

"The Chinese Warrior Zhang Heng" by Utagawa Kuniyoshi

The child warrior lifts the leviathan, his skin red hot, and baby fat bulges as he flexes his muscles. His eyes focus hard, with lips pursed as he holds his breath for the task. In the midst of the struggle, chunks of white foam rush to the surface like an upside-down snowstorm. A rushing current forms with the lifting of the great sea-beast. He wriggles forcefully, kicking up waves, but it is of no use.

The beast's opponent is no ordinary child. This is the rise of mankind: a colorful contrast to his surroundings with an ability and motivation to dominate. The red warrior has strength beyond strength. He can go where there is no air to breath, grab hold of what seems far more powerful, and bend it to his will.

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