Friday, March 1, 2013
Perhaps by Shu Ting
Perhaps our cares
will never have readers
Perhaps the journey that was wrong from the start
will be wrong at the end
Perhaps every single lamp we have lit
will be blown out by the gale
Perhaps when we have burned out our lives to lighten the darkness
there will be no warming fire at our sides.
Perhaps where all the tears have flowed
the soil will be richer
Perhaps when we sing of the sun
the sun will sing of us
Perhaps as the weight on our shoulders grows heavier
our faith will be more lofty
Perhaps we should shout about suffering as a whole
but keep silent over personal grief.
Because of an irresistible call
We have no other choice.
Translated by WJF Jenner.
Shu Ting (Chinese: 舒婷, pinyin: Shū Tíng, born 1952 Jinjiang, Fujian) is the pseudonym of Gong Peiyu (Chinese: 龔佩瑜, pinyin: Gǒng Pèiyú), a Chinese poet. During the Cultural Revolution, she was sent to the countryside, (because her father was accused of ideological nonconformity), until 1973. Back in Fujian, she had to work at a cement factory, a textile mill, and a lightbulb factory. She began to write poetry in 1969 and her work was published in several literary magazines. Her poetry began to appear in the underground literary magazine Jīntiān (Today). In the early 1980s, she achieved prominence as the leading female representative of the Misty Poets. Her first collection, Shuangwei chuan appeared in 1982, as did a joint-collection with Gu Cheng. She was asked to join the official Chinese Writers' Association, and won the National Outstanding Poetry Award in 1981 and 1983. During the "anti-spiritual pollution" movement that was launched in 1983, she, like other writers that were thought to be subversive by the state, was heavily criticised. Following this she published two collections with poetry: Hui changge de yiweihua and Shizuniao.