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10.01.08
Six Poems
Hai Zi
Translated by Ye Chun
From June to October

Woman of June gathers water, gathers moonlight
Woman of July sells cotton
Woman under the August tree
washes her ears
I hear in the opposite window
that the woman of September is engaged
her ring like a wet chick in her pocket
Woman of October blows out the candles
of her wedding. Black doors
fall on the grasslands 


 



Moon

Chimney smoke up and down
The moon is a white ape digging a well
The moon is a white ape smiling wanly on the river

How many times blood trickles out of the sky
The white ape flows past a bell tower
The moon is a white ape smiling wanly
The moon breaks its own heart


 



July is Not Far
 

—for Qinghai Lake, please put out my love


July is not far
The birth of sex is not far
Love is not far—under a horse’s nose
salt in the lake

Thus Qinghai is not far
Beehives along the lake
make me lugubrious: 
Flowers bloom in green grass. 

On Qinghai Lake
my loneliness is like heaven’s horse
(Thus, heaven’s horse is not far) 

I am the loveseed: the wild flower 
sung in poems, the only fatal flower 
in the belly of heaven’s horse
(Qinghai Lake, put out my love!) 

The green stem of a wild flower is not far
The ancient names in the medicine chest are not far
(Other bums, their sicknesses cured
returned home, I want to go visit you now) 

Thus over the mountain and across the water 
death is not far
Bones hang in my body like branches on blue water

O Qinghai Lake, the dusk-covered water: 
Everything is in front of me! 

But the birds of May have flown away
The first bird that drinks my head of jewels has flown away
Only Qinghai Lake stays, this corpse of jewels
                                       this dusk-covered water


 



Folk Artists

Three blind men on the plain
are leaving for the far

Red handdrums suddenly beat
at midnight

There’s no dead man
no datewood crutch being buried

Beat, beat
The heart sleeps in the farthest place

Three blind men on the plain
are leaving for the far

That night
they eat sorghum pancakes in the dark


 



Ocean Overhead 

Primitive mother
hides from a farmer
She throws his sickle in the field
drowns her baby in the well
and lets the field lie waste

In the lamplight it seems I’ve met her
She jumps into the ocean
and the ocean hangs over the barn
It seems the snow
of my hair and my father’s is burning


 



Ballads

1.

If you’re my brother you wave your hand
If you aren’t you go on your way

Little lamp, little lamp, lift his buried eyes

Your woods are big and black
Your horse is not quiet
Your lips have wild honey
Are you a husband—or a brother

Little lamp, little lamp, lift his buried eyes

If you’re my brother you wave your hand
If you aren’t you go on your way

2. 

White pigeons, white pigeons
tie my scarf
Wind blows your bodies
and blows my white scarf

White pigeons white pigeons don’t say a word
Pretty head little sun
turns into moon at night
White pigeons white pigeons don’t say a word

3. 

Moon moon slowly climbs
shines on a wooden bed
River river quickly flows
covers the flesh in my heart

White horse crosses the river, a spread of white
Black horse crosses the river, a spread of black
This river is always
the river in my heart

White horse crosses the river, a full moon
Black horse crosses the river, a half moon
This moon is always 
the moon on my bed