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The Tiger and the Dragon
Emily, Age 15, Alexandria, VA

Conflicting spirits never to coexist,
Ripping throats and tearing flesh
With claws and fangs always to persist,
At every meeting when the fire ignites afresh.

Their eternal strife, eternal conflict,
Enough for the dragon to cry alone in her lofty realm.
They are wounds to the soul, that the tiger can inflict.
But his misfortune alone is enough to overwhelm.

Long ago, the young rooster was told
That a phoenix she would become,
If she possessed a heart of gold
And patience, but the will to overcome.

It would be the tiger and the dragon who would,
Always to fight, clash over the phoenix as well.
And the young rooster grasped the true meaning,
understood that, one day, the tiger and dragon would share the final farewell.

And although it may be difficult to comprehend,
Once, each saw the other as the closest, dearest friend.

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