An Qi [安琪] (1969 – )

Huang Jiangpin (黄江嫔) is a modern-day Chinese woman, formerly a teacher, now working as a full-time poet under the pseudonym An Qi (安琪). What strikes me about her poems—which I first read through translations— is the attention to detail that helps to paint a picture.

Reading An Qi’s work has been an interesting experience for me. As I have now been studying Chinese for almost ten years, I was able to understand much of the original poem in Mandarin. I also noticed some slight differences in meaning from the original to the translation: for example, the Chinese version repeats 天,or day, much more frequently than it appears in the translation. Fascinating!

Below find an 安琪 poem in both English and Chinese.

Parting Before Daybreak

by An Qi

First the day,
then daybreak,
and finally the time for parting.
Local time in Beijing is 7 o’clock according to the TV.

As a child, I liked to lie in bed
and wait for daybreak,
my silver broach stayed in its soft dormant curve.
I counted my fingers,
exactly ten.

Almost daybreak,
but no light in the sky.
At daybreak you come. Daylight is gone when you go.
Days with light, days without light, days come, days go.
You come, you go, coming and going, walking to me, and away from me.

Now a grown-up, I still daydream,
waiting for daybreak like waiting for an archaeologist
to excavate, patting me with a spade
and expose me to daylight.
Oh, oh, just as I feel the thrill, I see your hand leaving.

天不亮就分手

安琪

天是一例
亮是一例
分手是最后一例
电视播报现在是北京时间7点整

小时候我经常躺在床上
等天亮
一块弯曲的银制别针挽留了睡眠的感觉
我数了数指头
不多不少正好十根

天要亮了
天不亮了
天亮了你来了天不亮了你走了天亮天
不亮天天天天亮天不亮
你来了你走了来来走走走来了又走了

长大了我经常迷糊等天像个考古
工作者把我挖起
亮是一柄铁锹拍拍我
呵呵,我一激动看见你的手刚刚离去

Source: http://modernchinesepoetry.com/poets.php

Image from <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/asia/china/articles/china-travel-guide/&gt;

Note: I could not find an image of An Qi large enough to head this post. Apologies~

 

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