A Couple

By YANG JIAN

He was old.
She, too, was old.
Their years, like lightning, slit the heart of the passerby.
They quickly finished eating a chicken:
He, the head, she, the legs.
From outside the window, a warm spring breeze brushed their faces.
Their hearts stirred for once,
Like the firs in the park,
Towering, nondescript.
It would matter precious little
If they were dead, rotten.

 

Translated by Stephen Haven and Li Yongyi

 

Yang Jian’s books of poetry include Dusk, Old Bridge, and Remorse.

[Purchase your copy of Issue 05 here]

A Couple

Related Posts

A waxing moon over rocky hills

Moon Hill

SAM WHITE
Vigorous activity had always brought him energy, opening a hunger for more. But now ten minutes of walking, even on the treadmill in his apartment, just opened up a desire to be horizontal again. Everything did. His sons told him to rest. The medical tests found nothing.

Image of raindrops on a window

Translation: The Wangs’ Other Child

MARIO MARTZ
To be honest, they’ve been telling me for a while that one day they’ll donate everything, but that day never arrives, and I just keep urging them to do it once and for all: that way they can clear out the room and, more importantly, free themselves of the life contained in those boxes.

The Hundertwasser House in Vienna

Etude No. 2 and Etude No. 3

KIM CURTS MATTHEUSSENS
in Rome a monumental marble typewriter / ticked out their story into the sky: two lovers / devour time. she lay on the lawn near Trajan's / column. he plucked letters from her dress, / her hair, served them to her by hand, by mouth.