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Lo Hwa Photograph

Lo Hwa

Chapter 1

I remember in the morning when,
like quiet rain before dawn,
your touch would awaken me.

The reading room on the second floor of the Doe Library in the middle of the UC Berkeley campus offers a quiet row of tables for studying and a view toward the Campanile.

One Wednesday fall evening, after dozing for a while with my head on top of John Wisdom’s brilliantly dry philosophy essay on the meaning of something or other, I wake to look up into the smiling eyes of the young lady who also studies there until closing.

A charming dimpled smile greets my question about her notebook written over with three colors of ink: black, red, and blue: “Why are you writing with all those colors?” I ask while she reads and pores over a thickly bound text.

“I’m proofreading and correcting at the same time,” she looks up at me and replies in a quiet voice. “Dante wrote a long time ago, and reading early Renaissance Italian isn’t always easy. I need to read over my notes and translate at the same time, so I’m writing final corrections as I go along.” She smiles at me across the table with beautiful, serene confidence.

These photos not in the book.

A beautiful friend, a beautiful day, Point Reyes seashore in 1969.


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