Cry Out in Sorrow
Translators’ Note: This poem was written for Li Wenliang (1986–2020), the Wuhan doctor who alerted his colleagues about the coronavirus in December 2019, and died of the disease in February 2020. When punished by the police for “spreading rumors,” he said, “A healthy society should allow more than one voice.” The poem calls for public mourning as a protest against censorship.
Cry out loudlyI implore everyone:may his bones be sheltered in his own comforting soulmay this spring bring back all springs, adorning his waymay evil abandon evil and plead for mercy for himmay all the windows be thrown openand scatter their light for himmay his parents hold him in their arms againmay all the children wave high his funeral bannersmay the world stop—Today, whoever is alive should be his avengerthe hearts of humanity are breakingI implore everyonehang thunder and lightning in the sky for himsplit open the pelvis of the earth for his sakemay the abyss yawn ever deepermay the blazing fire swallow his ashes [End Page 81]
Lin Zi is a poet and artist from Henan province. Born in the 1960s, she started writing poetry in her forties and gained immediate recognition. She has also won nationwide recognition for her art. Her collection of poems and drawings won The Most Beautiful Book award in 2016.