Sun Lei “going out”

SunLei_PurpleBoat

 

Preparing for a summer trip to China.  June-July in Shanghai-Beijing. After years of living in cool summer Seattle, the prospect a bit on the daunting side. Somehow, the exercise of translating Sun Lei’s poem (and pairing it with his painting “Purple Boat”) eases concern with just how hot it will be.

 

 

“Tendency” 取向

Going out. Summer

Facing this congealing wave of heat

 

It often becomes some kind of observer

Not far off, it staring down at virtually everyone

and the rain it expels is supple

wiping out half the sky

 

But an evening rain is in fact a kind of brutality

Sending main thoroughfares careening

down to lower ground

 

Going for a walk in summer

Is to go out looking for love. To go out in protest.

To go out and twist up this life.

 

At least, its to go out and lay claim to a slip of shade

Gingerly heading home along the tree shadows

Along roads many times obscured

 

And the few stones that comprise resistance

Give me a deep impression

 

They are lazily arranged there

and they are absolutely quiet

Cooling my own high self-esteem down a bit

 

出门。夏天

迎面是团结中的热浪。

 

它经常被引申为一种观察,

不远处,它盯着几乎所有的人。

它所排斥的雨软塌塌的,

半空中就灭了。

 

而雨在傍晚实际上是一种蛮劲,

剥夺使主要的街道

斜向更低处。

 

夏天去散步

是去等一次爱。去违背。

去歪曲这一生。

 

至少,也是去认领一叶之荫,

小心翼翼地沿着树影回家,

沿着多次失明的路。

 

几块石头形成的阻力

让我由衷地感激。

 

它们懒散地列在那儿,

它们的寂静。

迫使我的尊严凉下来。

 

 

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