Once there was a princess who wept pearls,
and once there was a princess
who laughed flowers. Both died, I heard.
One of weeping
and the other of laughter.
But not because one’s eyes went dry
or the other forgot how to laugh.
One died of suffocation
entombed in pearls. The other choked
on a surfeit of flowers.
The pearls were sold for a fortune, I heard.
But the wilted flowers brought no gain at all.
Since then, I have heard
A woman’s tears have become
far more precious than her laughter.