His silver hair was long and tied in a half-ponytail with his greying moustache and beard merged at the side of his face. He stroked his long white beard as if combing it with his fingers. I sat near his feet in sobs from the trauma infused inside the cells in my body, exploding throughout the day.
"Sifu, please help me," I said, touching his shin with my right hand and my chest with my left.
"Yes, my daughter," he said, as he touched my shoulder. "Tell me how I can help you."
His deep voice grounded me, as his touch gave me a presence of peace consoling my soul.
"I am hopeless," I told him, in sobs from heartaches and the overwhelming fears.
"Work. Make something out of nothing, and transform it into an achievement," Sifu said, stroking his beard, and this time, he placed his palms up on his knees. He inhaled a breath and exhaled as his eyes closed.
"I am a writer. I don't think I will ever make it," I told him. Inside of me was a glass ball of fragility filled with all of the magic I once possessed, as I felt it suspended in mid-air inside my chest, afraid to show my brilliance to the world.
"Ringworm? Frost-bite on your finger?" Sifu asked.
"No...," I cried to him, with my mind still in a vortex of impossibilities, negating all of my optimism into oblivion.
"Is your stomach okay?" Sifu asked.
"Yes, but I don't think I am good enough," I told him.
"It is a matter of skill, my daughter," Sifu said. "Become good enough to turn their subjective opinions into objective of excellence on your behalf."
"I am old, Sifu," I told him, as my skin felt ragged on my body, and free-radicals exploded inside of me. I would be dead by the time I knew how to marvel them, in my coffin by the time anyone would publish me, and in heaven by the time anyone would buy my novels.
"Writing never ages, but age could write a billion stories. It is a gift, my daughter," Sifu said. He opened his eyes, and searched inside his grey robe with a black sash tying it into place. He took out a small dagger, in the shape of the new moon with a silver blade.
"Do you see how small this object is?" asked Sifu.
"Please don't hurt me," I begged him. "I cannot handle anymore stabs to my back."
Sifu took the dagger and held it in his right hand, and with his left hand, he caressed my silky black hair. "This object is small, but brought anyone great fear or threat. I want you to sharpen your mind, as fierce as this dagger. Dig deep into literature."
Sifu took the dagger, and handed it to me. "Your mind and heart are as sharp as this dagger, and these qualities are all inside of you."
My burden felt light over my back, and suddenly I felt as a feather on a pen, ready to scribe another story into a million empty pages. "Sifu, I will keep writing. Even as the enemies calls out my demise and dug my grave."
"Remember, only a fool hopes without action," Sifu said.
"Yes, Sifu. I will," I stood up from the ground, and kow-tow to him in my white robe and yellow belt.
"Bring something to eat for me next time," he said, closing his eyes and chanted to his own psalms of prayers.