Vernal Longing

By Huang Hongqi (2013)


Under a heavy workload, my longings are crushed,
curling up in a hidden corner.

The white vapor rises slowly from a cup of tea,
giving off a wisp of familiar orchid scent.

It looked like a dimple in the water at first,
then morphs into a slim figure in the evening air.

With soft chuckles "he-he-he", she soon
floats out, eyes like twinkling stars.

"Um, I'm coming to see you," her lips open slightly,
"What are you up to? Still dabbling with poetry?"

I am overjoyed, but too shy to answer in one breath,
as if my throat is blocked.

The moon hangs high in the sky, and all critters are singing,
but under the lamp I'm perplexed by the vision of my sweetheart.

To avoid giving her a mundane greeting, I put down a verse:
"Oh, go ask the East River if he flows farther than my love for you!"

The scene vanishes in a flash. The tea is cold,
but my true love is near. I will not feel lonely any more.

From Wikipedia:  An Qi is the pen name of Huang Jiangpin (黄江嫔) from Zhangzhou in Fujian province. She worked as a school teacher and cultural affairs cleric before devoting herself full-time to poetry in 2006. She became an established poet with the publication of several poetry anthologies, including Songs: Red Moon on Water (歌: 水上红月), Running Railings (奔跑的栅栏) and Living in the Manner of Duras (像杜拉斯一样生活). She has been called by the Beijing-based Poetry Journal (诗刊) as 'one of the best women poets of the new century.' Her poetry has appeared in numerous literary journals and translated into a number of languages, including English, Korean and Hebrew.

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