Tonight

It must have been too much alcohol,

even your look becomes suddenly 

                                            so tender

and full of the promise 

                             of a summer’s night.

I’m longing to have you, 

                                   here and now

before the harsh daylight steals you away

and I might never see you again.

                                  Anyway that’s the game,

a sweet but ruthless encounter 

 

                                   with no tomorrow

for queers like us in this all-embracing land.

But I like you tonight – 

that’s why this empty bar

does call for something more intimate 

                                     between us.

your face— 

your half-open shirt—

Your creamy chest— 

O the rushing sound 

                           deep inside my veins!

It’s been too good a night to let you flee,

                           just stay a while longer—

If you desire admiration,

                           or compliments 

from all men before and after me,

I have nothing better now

                          than my loneliness 

in a promiscuous life,

and tonight,

                            I’ve given it to you.

 

Published on The New English Review

National Business

The architect draws from his file 

a map, on which 

a tiny spot is red-circled.

Here, he says,

six billion investment;

His eyes glisten like coins

and his black tie dangles like a sword 

above the blueprint of a tower,

cadaverous, awe-provoking, 

the color of champagne gold.

 

I know the block of the street, where 

rosy clouds flew over

houses with mortared walls, 

though moss-eaten, 

home to eaves-seeking swifts,

rattled now, 

by excavator tires.

Zhang Yuan

It crouches 

              deep in the garden.

 

A bizarre phantasm in a still

aluminum jungle;

 

A wound where

memory 

            flows and stops 

the air, thwarted 

by the refracted light 

             of modernity.

 

A hundred years—

worms, 

            wars, 

humans,  

            guns,

emperors

            paupers  

built

           demolished

re-built

            preserved now

in the name of a billion RMB

gentrification.

 

The same, 

its terracotta redemption 

when time confiscates the iron-trace 

of humanity.

 

*Zhang Yuan, or the garden of Zhang, is a renowned residential house built early of the last century in West Nanjing Road, Shanghai, now an area for bars and cafes.but news comes this garden will soon be demolished for a new shopping mall.

November, 2018

The sad blue sky’s clear dust gropes its way down 

toward the city,

The asphalt roads glimmer like ice.

Red lights dim, like eyes deprived of sleep, 

trying to understand the great mystery of the morning.

                      

An old man stands at an empty phone booth,  

looking at his map

on which a thousand places are marked,

                                                   with no names.

His walking stick dangles on his arm, 

a compass uncertain of the south, where

the sun throws a shadow.

  

Soot-colored silence,

a black cat,

jumps into an open window, the curtain tied back and knotted.

An army of houses stand vigil on the first day 

                                                   of a lunar winter 

Car Crash On Fuxing Road

I came out from the subway, 

a sense of loss 

began 

to surround me.

People gathered around the exit, 

did not give way.

I hardly knew them, 

I did not understand 

their dialect.

But some words, like birds

escaping 

a horrifying storm,

came to me 

with the sound 

of Death.

 

It was eight in the evening,

rodents began to crawl on the street;

Cameras perched on a branch

and blinked.

A police car 

parked like a corpse

beneath.