Wednesday, April 26, 2006

"Lhasa Nights" by Woeser

O Lhasa, dreamlike nights!
A certain lotus may have never bloomed,
Sometimes a wineglass shatters at a tap;
Yet there are people,just a few—who blessed
Them with such spirit?—to whom this roaming feast
Seems Paradise for banishment self-chosen.
And if (invisibly) they weep,it’s only
For a kinsman whom they couldn’t keep.

O Lhasa, nights of woe!
A certain bluebird may have never chirped,
And sometimes garments get begrimed with dust;
Yet there are people,just a few—who spread
This plague?—who see bright fleeting Time as but
A pool wherein the posturing ego sinks.
Illusions countless,ever so seductive,
Can’t lure a reincarnate kinsman back.

O Lhasa, nights like nowhere else!
A love there is that never came to pass,
And certain bloodlines gradually mixed;
Yet there’s a man,perhaps just one—what kind
Of lightning bolt?—who makes a stifling fate
Serve as the hinge of reconciliation.
Upon the endless wheel of birth and death
I wish you would forever be my kin!

Translated from Chinese by A.E.Clark
and published originally by China Rights Forum Magazine, 2006.

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