Late Summer Day: A Response to “Sand Washed by Waves,” attributed to Li Qingzhao

Heavy clouds, a downpour, delay the dawn,
The rain’s constant drumming drowns out birdsong,
A temporary dowsing of the flames,
Then signal fires are relit again,
A broadcast in letterless alphabets
Of ciphered feelings—animal—private,
.
Cicadas grate out their percussive lust,
Concuss all ears, though meant for only one,
The flowers encrypt ultraviolet signs
For the bees to parse in late summer sun,
The hot air laced with cellphone talk and text,
Desire in invisible filaments.

But you—silent—as these words on a page:
“The universal mother is also the common grave.”

AGG20150901

Depth Charge: Having already done a translation of the original poem, which in itself is a type of response, this poem is actually as much a reaction to the translation as a response to the original. It is also heavily influenced by my reading of Lucretius’ On the Nature of the Universe at the time I was working on it. The last line is a quote from Book V.

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

To read  as close as the clouds by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the linke and select “Save link as…”

To read the chapbook Happy Birthday Hanafuda by Andrew Grimes Griffin just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

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