‘The Songs of Birds’ Ian Johnson

Day and night,
I copy the Diamond Sutra
of Prajnaparamita.
My writing looks more and more square.
It proves that I have not gone entirely
insane, but the tree I drew
hasn’t grown a leaf.
from “I Copy the Scriptures,” in Empty Chairs

Every month, the Chinese poet, photographer, and artist Liu Xia boards a train bound for the country’s north. Carrying food and books and escorted by four plainclothes police officers, she heads for a prison in the city of Jinzhou where her husband, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, is serving a sentence for subversion of state power. The ritual rarely varies: rising early to get the morning train, a short visit, and the train back.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2016/09/29/liu-xiaobo-songs-birds/

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About 诗东西 Poetry East West

Chinese-English bilingual magazine (will include more languages), published in Los Angeles USA, printed in Beijing China. ISSN 2159-2772

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