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Center for Taiji Studies Testimonials
Testimonial Poem


I'd heard about this teacher from a land far away.
They said I needed to meet him to study taiji one day.
Yang was his first name and his last name, too.
It took me quite a while, but my wish came true.

I was training under Boswell in a Tennessee town,
Sharpening up my skills for when Master Yang came down.
I Pounded Buddha's Mortar by doing a Single Whip.
Made the White Crane Spread Its Wings and
    the Blue Dragon take a dip!

Alas, I was ready when the big day finally came.
When Master Yang came to Knoxville, I was at the
    top of my game.
I could Walk Obliquely and Twist Step
    on Both Sides.
I could be Lazy About Tying Coat even
    if it was buffalo hide!

Master Yang began the workshop
    on an easy note. . . I thought.
Did the same moves we were learning . . .
    the same as Boswell taught.
I just knew I was looking good as we
    Covered Head and Pushed Mountain.
He smiled at my efforts and simply said, "Let's
    take a break. . . go to water fountain!"

He did a demonstration that left us
    all in awe.
Made the Jade Girl Work at Shuttle
    smoothest thing I ever saw!
Well, I thought about my own
    game, how Tornado Foot was
    such a menace!
Considered turning in my ruler
    and going back to tennis.

But, his confidence and easy manner
    said I should persevere.
After months and months of practice
    it's finally becoming clear.
It's the little things in life that
    some may think are dumb.
The greatest reward is for him to see you trying
    and give you "the thumb!"

R. Marks
September 12, 2002

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