Wednesday, May 16, 2018

A Distant Center

A Distant Center / Ha Jin,  75 p.

A collection of straightforward, accessible, yet rich poems, originally written in Chinese and dealing with themes of home, movement and loss connected with the author's emigration in 1985. 

My favorite was "Missed Time:"

My notebook has remained blank for months
thanks to the light you shower
around me. I have no use
for my pen, which lies
                                     languorously without grief.

                                     Nothing is better than to live
                                     a storyless life that needs
                                     no writing for meaning - 
                                     when I am gone, let others say
                                     they lost a happy man,
                                     though no one can tell how happy I was.

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