my old home

where the ice cream parlour
once stood
an army recruiting office
Kesselman’s gone
where my mother shopped
for jewelry
the bank on the corner
where Maryanne worked
a discount clothing store
the hardware store
both Johnny and I
drove delivery trucks for
now Wicker Heaven
gone Atlantic Avenue Deli
the Arcade Movie Theatre
Woolworth’s Five & Dime
just that wind
that blows down every street
in every town
as strong as ever
in my old home

Middle Years by Wang An-shih

Middle years devoted to the nation, I lived a fleeting dream,
and home again in old age, I wander borderland wilderness.

Looking south to green mountains, it’s clear I’m not so alone
here; on spring lakes, they crowd my little-boat life all adrift.

translated by David Hinton

The Temple of Su Wu by Wen T’ing-yun

Though our envoy, Su Wu, is gone, body and soul,
This temple survives, these trees endure. . .
Wildgeese through the clouds are still calling to the moon there
And hill-sheep unshepherded graze along the border.
. . .Returning, he found his country changed
Since with youthful cap and sword he had left it.
His bitter adventures had won him no title. . .
Autumn-waves endlessly sob in the river.

translated by Witter Bynner & Kiang Kang-hu