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This poem is taken from PN Review 199, Volume 37 Number 5, May - June 2011.

Four Poems (translated by Ye Chun, Melissa Tuckey and Fiona Sze-Lorrain) Yang Zi
Pearl River written in Chinese

Pearl River

Who will speak of it in reverent language?
Who will endear it as 'she'?
Every morning, every night,
tired buses carrying half-dead people cross the twelve bridges.
Distracted, dull eyes were cast toward it without slightest bit of love, as if this motionless corpse
has sucked the spirit from their bodies.
Nobody pays attention to the ghostly white yacht
and the foolish 'Waterside Shangri-la'.
Lights on both banks are a spread of gold
like a field of rape flowers,
what an expensive beauty!
In summer, the suddenly risen river
will flood the white air roots of banyans,
and the marble stairs of the Trade Center
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