Migrating to Chongqing

  • Na Ye
  • 02 September 2019

 

Four poems by Na Ye
Translated by Ouyang Yu
Read original language versions

 

 

To wash down the north-western wind with liquor, like the dishes

To wash down the north-western wind with liquor, like the dishes

With no stray lambs coming up to ask for directions

 

We are talking about the width and cleanness of a river and its meaning to all the

mountains and rivers

And the meaning of the other shore to the heart and soul

 

After the middle age

We refrain ourselves from the bad habit of sighing about life

 

And we have stopped looking in the direction that others point

Wooden effigies, of course, can also be placed where God's images are placed

 

You clap your hands

Only for the purpose of improving your health

 

True and falsehood are an endless litigation

But you only have one life

 

Times are speeding up we are in no hurry

We pour ourselves a drink and drink it and, occasionally, we talk to ourselves

 

Lights in the distance strike a righteous attitude but lack a kind heart

And we no longer have the passion for getting drunk, once and for all

 

In a floating life, gatherings and departures are like the clouds

Only heavens know

 

Every time I sing praise of the green mountains and waters on my journey

I miss the vast desolation of the plateau in the northwest

 

 

 

 

Migrating to Chongqing

Getting further away now ...

 

All right, Chongqing

Let my dry skin fall in love with your moisture

My eyes, used to the desolation and wind and sand, have grown used to your green

mountains and waters

The French plane-trees

The gingko trees

Your sudden flashes of lightning and thunder

Commotion of dripping water

And the heaving quietness

The fate of history, one step higher, one step lower here — it with us mankind

Having no experience of tomorrow

When together with your heavy fog

With heaven and earth merged in a chaos

I hold my shoulders, looking about me and talking to myself: getting further away ...

 

 

 

 

Pleasure

The ancient flame is so trustworthy

These potatoes bok choy with mud and roots

The steam on this steamed bread

The frost on the turnip

 

Among them

I'm no longer a stranger to myself

And I no longer live elsewhere

 

I experience what is said in the Buddhist scriptures: pleasure

 

The sunflower on my apron, like love, twists my body:

Old sun how are you going?

As good as in an agricultural era?

Sadness, like a wisp of chimney smoke, comes surging out of whose eyes

 

The old sun

I do not love a violently speeding age

These rooms that are connected, like rails, with the world ...

 

Morning dew and sweat and echoes of the roaring mountain wind — I love

A kitchen smelling of farming and its

Empty bottles at dusk

 

Me on a small stool

 

 

 

 

Praise

Praise the existence of soul and the entanglement of quantum

Praise dark matter and the nameless grass on the rooftiles

Praise the two fluffy birds in my study

    that have acquired eternity in the mountains and waters of a painting

Praise an empty jail

    for having turned into a stone, forgotten by the earth

    the way wind and sands have turned into sesames

Praise this generation for what it has experienced ...

    the ginkgo leaves flying and dancing next life

    and for their wish to become golden butterflies

Praise the sun in Chongqing

    although I sometimes side with the big fog

Praise such a God:

    Please treat kids and poets well

    because they are my messengers ...

    in the Harvard Art Museums in America

    I praised Monk Wang from my hometown

    And the Dunhuang cultural relics, dispersed around world museums

    — it's good as long as they are there

 

 

 

Na YeAn important and representative poet of contemporary Chinese women's poetry, Na Ye graduated from the Department of Chinese Language, Nanjing University. She is now based in Chongqing. She began writing in 1985, has worked as a journalist for a long time and is now a professional writer and a member of China Writers Association. 

Topic tags: Poetry, Na Ye, Ouyang Yu

 

 

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