City of Flowing Water
Its noises estranged us, that city of flowing water,
The windows could open even bigger;
For the sky did not cave in or leak through,
The moon not come for the twilight.
It would be centuries of detours before a love comes
To shake our worlds and make ghosts cry.
The alley of night was not a thoroughfare,
But it was not narrow either;
Too many boats jammed up the course,
Lamps and dancing music were bloated,
And a swallow’s coos broke into howls in a bamboo forest
And let out sounds of pleasure.
Water ghosts grumbled by,
But it was still early for us to sigh.
On the gallows in the net-ground, no one
Was nailed or hung in the subsiding wind;
The moment the red sun was seen floating in the mist,
The dock was already a plaster
Patching the wound of a dream, and the next quay was preparing
A monsoon in the distance.
A shrike on the mast tucked in its neck and proud wings,
Cautioning a lamb on the bank:
Upturned look shall not be long,
Downcast gaze has to be short.
From now on, the moon will close its cyclops
To check the realness and weight of dreams,
The eyelids of stars will make a milkshake out of Farewell Song
And we drink it and ejaculate.
Oct. 5, 2009