Archive for the ‘September 2012’ Category

Moroccan Fountain

十月 3, 2012

Moroccan Fountain, Vienna
Marokkanergasse, Vienna

the sun is streaming
against the mosaic.
the fountain’s broken,
turned off.
the people are busy, most of them.
it’s 9 am.
shopping, smoking.
high heels. maybe productive.
in jackets and scarves.
it’s chilly compared with a few days ago.
for a moment, the sun.
the warm morning sun.

MW August 2012

From August 28. 周二,8月28日。 The sun was on the door at eight or nine. In the afternoon it’s around the corner. The door to the street is over 100 years old, like the house. Military officer’s quarters, originally. Our apartment is downstairs, ground floor. Still expensive, inner city. The picture is from May. The pictures below are from Beijing. Click on them and get to a song of healthy food.

Moon from train

十月 1, 2012

Sept. 30, 2012

the moon was very big at first
the moon at first was hardly there
we saw it rising from the train
one strip above, one strip below
must be the moon, it will come out
they say it’s very full and round
it doesn’t look a quarter full
the moon comes out, the train moves on
the train is full and rather short
the tired people on the train
the air is bad, the bathroom’s blocked
and then the moon comes out again
the train has crossed the danube bridge
the hiking day was beautiful
the fields, the woods, the paths, the wine
the day was fine, the moon is gone
I hope our friends across the world
are feeling well around the moon.

MW September 2012

moon again

Wann kommt heut der Mond hervor?

As if

月夜穿过丛林 Moonlight going through the woods (Liao Yiwu 廖亦武)

Menschenseele ist Licht des Herrn
Hope you had a happy moon! (Moon 2011 and 9/11)


the danube flows

late night wrap

Chen Kohua und Lai Hsiangyin

九月 13, 2012

Click here to read a few poems.

Chen Kohua und Lai Hsiangyin sind im Oktober zu Gast im Literarischen Colloquium Berlin. Außerdem werden sie an der Universität Heidelberg aus ihren Werken lesen.

Chen Kohua und Lai Hsiangyin treten am 29. Oktober um 20 Uhr im Hörsaal SIN 1, Ostasieninstitut Universität Wien auf. (Campus Altes AKH, Hof 2, Eingang 2.3)

Übersetzung: Martin Winter

Eine Veranstaltung des Österreichischen P.E.N. – Clubs

Mit Unterstützung des BMUKK


九月 7, 2012

Zhan Bing 詹冰(綠血球 Taipei: 笠, 1965), from



如果把周作人在2000年出來的那本《中國新詩1916-2000》裡的兩首當例子,<小河>寫自然環保,<飲酒>寫肉體和心理、精神的欣賞和共鳴,很濃的一首,節奏很強。不過盡力剔除非詩因素還是會有些社會中、讀書人中都存在的前提。我自己覺得如果有人問我家鄉奧地利現在最好的作家,隻說女作家,包括兒童書,都已經夠了,比如說寫話劇、小說、散文的E.Jelinek(得了諾貝爾獎),還有三位女詩人Elfriede Gerstl、Friederike Mayroecker、Rosa Pock。剛才說第一E. Gerstl已經逝世,她來自猶太家庭,二戰時被藏起來幸存。第二位F.Mayroecker已經80歲,第三位R.Pock不像前兩位著名,但也已經很久寫出風格很獨特的詩作。女詩人還可以加早一點已經去世的Hertha Kraeftner和Christine Lavant,不過加她們當然得加八十年代初去世的,曾經跟策蘭同居的Ingeborg Bachmann英格褒‧巴赫曼。還要加一兩位寫小說的,比如Marlen Haushofer。她寫的長篇《牆》Die Wand寫一位女性敘述者在山中一個人生活,突然碰到透明的牆。說了這幾位加三位寫兒童書的,年紀最老的Mira Lobe, 自己小時候最喜歡,現在還覺得她寫得最好聽、最感人,加上我當小孩就非常喜歡的畫圖。還有Christine Noestlinger,她寫了大人讀的詩,也寫了很多很多兒童文學。我最喜歡她的詩,還有兩本自傳式的,寫小女孩在二戰結束時的經驗,很寫實、很直接、不加修飾的感覺。她來自工人家庭,一輩子都寫工人和小資產階級等家庭的故事,從孩子的角度、從非權力的角度來講。昨天帶孩子到牙科醫生,盡力讓孩子合作不讓他痛苦。等候時看到了自己小時候聽父母念的一本<雨水筒快樂洒洒歌唱>(Lustig singt die Regentonne,作家Vera Ferra-Mikura), 都是兒童詩歌,畫圖也非常好。兒童書還可以增加很好的女作家,先暫時不說。



300 Modern Chinese Poems (Chinese-English) 汉英对照版《中国新诗300首》

九月 2, 2012

300 Modern Chinese Poems (Chinese-English) 汉英对照版《中国新诗300首》

Zhao Siyun 赵思运, who was introduced on the MCLC list by Michael Day a while ago with a poem called June 5th 六月五日, has a list of authors and poems on his Blog, for a Chinese-English anthology of over 300 modern Chinese poems 中国新诗300首. Compiled by an institution called International Poetry Translation and Research Centre, IPTRC. Very welcoming, diverse and expansive. Including writers from Taiwan, and many young voices. Liao Yiwu 廖亦武 is included, though not with his most representative work, probably. Lü Yuan 绿原 is there, he did a Chinese-German anthology, introducing Yu Jian 于坚 in 1990, rather early. Bei Dao 北岛 was included in there, but with a comparatively insignificant poem. He is better represented in this new effort, although I miss the mosquito. It’s very hard to include one or two significant poems from an author who is obviously politically significant.

Interesting to compare this with other anthologies, in Chinese and other languages. Zhongguo Xin Shi 中国新诗 (Fudan UP 2000), ed. Zhang Xinying 张新颖, has two poems by Zhou Zuoren 周作人, one against unnecessary water dams and a drinking song, both very impressive. Zhou Zuoren has not made it onto the IPTRC list. Of course it’s rather easy to come up with some of your favorites who are not represented, compared to shifting through many thousand poems and coming up with such a list. Huang Xiang 黄翔 is included, despite his dissident status, but he is already in Zhongguo Xin Shi 中国新诗. As usual, I am looking at newer people first, although I only recognize two from those born in 1970 or later. Zhou Yunpeng 周云蓬 is there, the blind folk singer. But not Cui Jian 崔健. Woeser 唯色 is there, which is great! But in general there are hardly any poets from minority nations in China.

Ha Jin 哈金 is missing, but he writes in English. Gao Xingjian 高行健 does not appear, but is mostly known for fiction and drama. So who else hasn’t made it? Yang Ze 楊澤、Hsiang Yang 向陽、Hung Hung 鴻鴻、Mai Mang 麦芒 (Huang Yibing 黄亦兵), who sometimes writes in English and teaches at Connecticut (there is another Mai Mang 麦芒 in China, known for one-liners).

On with the non-list: Sun Wenbo 孙文波、Li Nan 李南、Yang Jian 杨键、Zhu Wen 朱文、Yin Lichuan 尹丽川、Zheng Xiaoqiong 郑小琼、Ma Lan 马兰、Hong Ying 虹影、Pang Pei 庞培、Che Qianzi 车前子、Yan Jun 顏峻. I would have included Yan Jun’s 反对 Against All Organized Deception (translated by Maghiel van Crevel) and Ma Lan’s 事故和理由 The accident and the reason, maybe even combined with 仿佛 As If. And How We Kill a Glove 我们如何杀一只手套, if it wouldn’t be too long. Hong Ying’s 饥饿 Hunger, also written abroad. And one of Zheng Xiaoqiong’s 郑小琼 new female migrant worker’s portraits.

Then there would be others. Not compatible, maybe. Wu Yinning 吳音寧 and Li Ch’in’an 李勤岸 are very much from Taiwan. Wu Yinning 吳音寧 is more well-known for her reportages. The poems contain many fascinating local expressions, hard to translate. I’ve only read two poems by Li Ch’in’an 李勤岸, in a three-volume anthology of about 100 years of poetry in Taiwan. One of these two poems is a personal favorite, 解嚴以後 – 一九八七年七月十五日臺灣解嚴紀念 After Martial Law Was Lifted – In Commemoration of Lifting Martial Law in Taiwan on July 15th, 1987.

I have been reading a great anthology of Lithuanian poetry in the last few days. And there are beautiful anthologies of recent Chinese poetry in English, like the online treasure in the Spring/Summer 2006 issue of, edited by Inara Cedrins, or the Atlanta Review China issue. Without any Chinese characters, unfortunately. But these are important collections, with some great translations. The Drunken Boat collection is very diverse, including minority people in China, extra sections on Hong Kong, Macau and Singapore, as well as very much else from abroad. Even half of the non-minority nation poets in China who are in The Drunken Boat are not in the IPTRC 300. The Antlanta Review China collection, edited by George O’Connell, contains some of the best Chinese poetry I’ve read in translation anywhere in any language. And there is a good volume in English of Che Qianzi’s 车前子 poems and some of his friends, with a note in the back that the Chinese text can be found in some university library. Oh well. Many contemporary poets from China, including some world-famous ones, are not easily found in China. This has been going on for decades. Anyway, there is not enough modernity, not enough experiment in Chinese literature in general, especially in China. So it would be great to include some people like Che Qianzi 车前子 in any anthology. There is also not enough performance, that’s where Yan Jun 颜峻 and other sound and music stuff would come in.

The Lithuanian anthology mentioned above is from Poetry Salzburg Press. I love the long hallucinating love poem Bird in Freedom by Vytautas Bložė, written while imprisoned and “treated” in a Soviet psychiatric hospital. And the song-like evocations of Vilnius’ old city and the empty Jewish ghetto by Judita Vaičiūnaitė. The translations of these poems and many others by Laima Sruoginis are hauntingly beautiful. Much of the identity of the Baltic countries is built on songs, a great foundation for poetry.

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