Friday, December 26, 2008

Translation follow-up

Some weeks back I posted a report on my participation in the Simmons College Chinese Poetry Conference. Here is the translation of my poem that was begun there.

Friday, December 19, 2008

One must have a mind of winter

All morning the stores were packed with people saying to one another, "It's coming. It's coming." And now it's here, the first storm of the winter. And man oh man, it's coming. Coming and coming. Here's a recent poem of mine, published in Chautauqua's 25th Anniversary issue:


Boston snowbound, Logan closed, snowplows
and salt-trucks flashing yellow, drifts
tall as a man some places, visibility poor,
I sit by the window and watch the snow

blow sideways north-northeast, hot cup
in hand, robe over pajamas.
You have made me to seek refuge
and charged me to care for my brothers.

How cruel. That could only be You out there
howling, cracking the trees, burying everything.
What could I possibly want from You
that would not undo the whole world as it is?

Hope the larder's full, the fire is warm, and you have a good book in your lap.