Poem: Like A Factory Worker

Here are two poems written by Tianjin based poet Li Wei (translated by M.J.):

Like a factory worker

I cut off my long hair
Short to the roots
Mali Zhe saw it
Patted me and said
Oh my, your head is truly ugly
Like that of a factory worker
I became quite sad
Not for my head
But for the factory workers
For the workers who were leaders in all
I was like a real worker
Glanced in the mirror
The reflection of myself in a desperate state
My hair short and messy
My forehead and face adopted a few new lines
The autumn wind encircles me again
Exposes my ever so trend-setting scalp
As it shivers in currents of cold.

Summer night in Tianjin

I am in the room
The room as hot as yesterday
I open the doors and windows
Still I see no wind
But I can see the stars
Bluish hues flickering
Illuminating abandoned streets
Following the streets’ bend
Through the night’s Sea River
In the river there rest silenced iron boats
Lights from far away
Skip across the water’s dark surface
On the Bright Bridge across the river
Surely stand many people
They lean on the rails catching a breeze
From the wind blowing from across the sea
As it skims over the river’s surface
Caresses their half lit, half dimmed faces
Lifting their long or short locks of hair.


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