Tang Ao's Mystical Fart

Sketches for an illustration project. I haven't quite got it right, yet. You'll see.

But I smell something fragrant....
Tang Ao followed the scent through the forest toward a precipice, and found a lovely vermilion plant of about two feet high growing from a crack in a rock on the roadside. After scrutinizing it, Tang Ao remembered a passage from an ancient book of nutrition which said, 'The vermilion plant resembles a dwarf mulberry bush. It has a coral coloured stalk with blood-red juice in it. Gold or jade, upon coming into contact with it, will dissolve into paste, called "gold paste" or "jade paste" depending on which is used. He who takes of this paste will leave the worldly existence and enter the region of Immortals.'
...He took a very small piece of jade from his head-scarf, and plucked the plant up...Laying it carefully between his palm and the piece of jade, he rubbed them together. Sure enough, it all melted into a brightly coloured red paste. He put this in his mouth, and immediately felt a fragrance permeate his brain, and was at once extremely invigorated....
'Well, you'll soon become an Immortal,' said Lin. "But why are you looking so miserable? Is it because you cannot bear the thought of leaving your family, or you quaver at the thought of joining the spirits?'
'I have a stomach-ache,' said Tang Ao. 'I don't know why.'
He had hardly finished speaking when there was a rumble in his stomach, a loud explosion, followed by an an appalling smell.

Clapping his hand over his nose, Lin cried, "Good! The vermilion plant has purged the impurities from your system! I wonder what else you have lost!'
Tang Ao kept saying, 'Strange! Strange! Just now, I could remember even the verses I composed as a child. Now I can remember only a tenth of it.'
'That is strange indeed,' said Old Tuo.
'Doubtless nine-tenths of your learning went out with that break of wind,' said Lin. 'The one-tenth you retain must be the inoffensive part. If you put it down on paper it will all be good....'


Quill said...

I love the asiafile. And these are some gorgeous illustrations. Continue with the project. These parables distort my mind.

pele said...

Gee, shucks, &yes, the asiafile - reminds me that I need to add some older posts in. I anticipate its bulging, bursting, and overtaking this blog.

Laura said...