Enjoying myself alone, if only for once

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Selected poems



Enjoying myself alone, if only for once

Racing along the Shenyang-Hainan Island Freeway alone

Going across the Hangzhou Bay alone

Playing amidst the Zhoushan Archipelago alone


Staying in a mountain village alone

Occupying a presidential suite alone

Lying across a queen-size bed two metres wide, alone


Rolling this way and that

I could sleep whichever way I liked

I'd fought and rolled all my life

But had never done that

This way


Enjoying a private room alone

Using eight dinner sets alone

Ordering ten courses alone

Drinking three hundred glasses alone


Eating and drinking alone

Accompanied by three girls

Who poured tea for me, opened the bottles, replaced plates and pulled open the


And on a full stomach

I went to the KTV on the top floor


Just enjoying myself, if only for once

For such enjoyments could pull off


Of a place




Wanting to throw tantrums


A horse

Runs into a café

Scaring the customers away —

Is that an English horse

Or an Italian or French one?

Don't remember

All I can remember is that when I was a teenager

I'd often make trouble

Smashing this family's water vat

Or that family's window

Bullying the wheat and the rape

Uncle chided me, saying:

You are like a horny bull, running wild everywhere!


Now, I'm no longer horny

Occasionally, though, I dream of becoming a president

And if I become one

I can throw tantrums at random

Horse tantrums and bull tantrums

Or even donkey tantrums

If I don't like someone

I can rear

And throw him

Off my back




This city

This city


Towards the clouds towards the sea


This city

Its top levels very, very high

The highest reaching paradise


This city

Its bottom levels very, very low

The lowest deep into hell


This city

Is a huge ant nest

Crawling everywhere gnawing everywhere

Burrowing in and out

Of everywhere


This is a city of mixed overlappings

Gold and bricks steel muscles and bones

Beauties and animals —


Flowers of the day rubbish of the night

Pleasure and tears

All flushed into the sewage

By the toilets


River waters and shares

Market quotations and the sea level all rising!

And my heart

Has been sinking with this city




Only half an hour allowed

The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

Allows only


An hour




Only half

An hour



Tibetan blue bears




Half an hour





Within half an hour

Straight after birth


And immediately

Find one's own mother

Follow her

Covering 500 kilometres

Before reaching

The mysterious



The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau


Allows the small Tibetan antelope


An hour




A strange condition

His old classmate, while drinking, said that he was suffering from a strange condition

Often talking to his dead wife in his dreams

Waking his current wife up with a fright


His current wife said that he'd got a condition

But the doctor couldn't find out the cause


On one occasion, he was fighting with someone in a dream

And kicked his wife off the bed


On several other occasions, he kicked at nothing

And ended up kicking himself onto the floor


After he was isolated in a hospital

Abnormal activities were found in his brainwaves


According to a doctor, the hospital had set up a case team

In pursuance of patients similar to him


I did not tell him that

I was also suffering from the same condition


As, more than a decade ago

My kickings in a dream had caused injuries to my wife

Who had to divorce me



Born in Shanghai, in November, 1953, Lu Piao, whose original name is Lu Jinchang, is a member of Shanghai Writers' Association and editor-in-chief of Pujiang Literature, and has published a number of poetry books, including A Dark River, Snow in the North, A Yellow Lamp through the Moon and Footsteps of a Thunder.

Ouyang Yu (translator) is a poet still alive and writing. Enough said.

Topic tags: Lu Piao, poetry



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Existing comments

Brilliant, funny and moving. Thank you , poet and translator.
Tony Kevin | 05 March 2019


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