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  • Small Notes in My Old Age
  • Song Wei (bio)
    Translated by Ming Di (bio) and Kerry Shawn Keys (bio)

I return to the village and see lots of red pepperssunbathing on the threshing floor with me,giving warmth to the summer.I put my hands to my eyebrow to make an arboras if installing an air conditioner in front of my eyes.In fact, my forehead and my neck are making salt.Lots of salt. Look, we've made this summer so salty!And I'm not hospitable enough to myself, otherwisewhy should I bring myself this full cup of liquor?Yes, because I've finally had half of it.As an antique holistic idealist, I demand everything be completeincluding remnants of clouds, embers, and death.However, I can accept what's second best: no old age.Too many people give up the rest of their lives to be a martyr.One life is too short to accommodate, might as well leave.I am so extreme. I either fly up to eat people, or diveinto the sea to watch the stars—the sky collapses,sea water overflowing. If my old age coincides with this earth,why aren't we doomed on the same day? If the earth can't waitfor my urgent but sweet deadline, I will say to the world:Come sooner! [End Page 103]

Song Wei

Song Wei 宋炜 was born in 1964 in Sichuan province. A hermit, he has received many friendly offers for publication, but has not yet published a book of poetry.

Ming Di

Ming Di 明迪 is a Chinese poet based in the U.S. She attended Boston College and Boston University, where she taught Chinese. She has published six books of poetry in Chinese along with a collaborative translation, River Merchant's Wife (2012). She co-translated The Book of Cranes by Zang Di (2015) with Neil Aitken, and Empty Chairs: Selected Poems by Liu Xia (2015) with Jennifer Stern, which was a finalist for the 2016 Best Translation Book Award. She edited and co-translated New Cathay: Contemporary Chinese Poetry (2013) and New Poetry from China 1917–2017 (2019). In 2013 and 2014, she received Henry Luce Foundation fellowships. A co-founder of Poetry East West journal, she serves as the China editor for Poetry International Rotterdam. She has also translates from English into Chinese, most recently Observations by Marianne Moore (2018).

Kerry Shawn Keys

Kerry Shawn Keys has published nearly fifty books, including poetry, plays, fiction, and children's literature. He is the recipient of NEA and Poetry Society of America awards, and translation awards from the Lithuanian Writers' Union. A member of International PEN, he is the Republic of Užupis' World Poetry ambassador.



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