A Movie Poster on the Wall of a Café *
is written on the skirt of a woman.
A robust woman in black
between heaven and earth,
hands on hips.
She fills the poster with her body,
leaving only a corner
to the maroon sky and dark clouds.
All of Italy is carried in her eyes.
The title drops on her breast.
* This translation has also appeared in Off the Coast, vol. 23, no. 4, Winter 2017, the editors having given permission to republish it in Double Dialogues.
I don’t listen to Beethoven
I don’t listen to the gang of Nazi ancestors
to pipe or fiddle.
Tenors and sopranos
sing in a language I never understand
as if sounding from the sewer.
Until one night
a chill sets in.
Roaring winds scratching the window,
terror befalls like a beast.
I load the Viennese into the headset,
shut myself off and slide into a dream.
I awake from a nightmare,
no sound of the wind at night.
My headset at bedside makes a faint voice,
it’s Mozart's solo
like an elf
in the dark
The Dead Sea in My Dream
Before leaving the Dead Sea
I'm going to take away some sea water
as a keepsake.
I have no other containers to carry
except a coke bottle.
I, in my dream
am back to the Dead Sea again,
where the pale-yellow rocky mountain is tall,
the coast covered with white salt blocks.
Bubbles ascend in the azure water
in the sunlight, exuding a faint scent
The Moment Time Is Frozen
The moment time is frozen
A gale of wind blows away
A vacuum night
I hold a box of Belgian chocolates
Passing through the street
The box is flung open
All of a sudden
Those things in sweet wrappers
Scatter on the ground
Reflecting colourful lights
Under the streetlamp
Like a charcoal fire splashing about
On a vacuum night
Wu Yulun, born in 1995, the son of Yi Sha, is currently an undergraduate at Beijing Normal University. His poetry is widely published in Chinese literary magazines and has recently appeared in English translation, for example, in Acumen: Poetry Prose Reviews, Issue 85, May 2016 and in Liang Yujing (ed. & trans.), Zero Distance: New Poetry from China (Hawai’i: Tinfish Press, 2017).