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Articles tagged "Wisdom"

The A to Z of Literary Translation: W, X, Y & Z

Worldwide web development and the long-tail phenomenon offer new opportunities for the visibility of literary translation. Electronic translation software is to be avoided. Postcolonial and new immigrant writing benefit from cross-frontier digital exchange. And lesser known cultures and languages can become more familiar to wider audiences—Ala Al Aswany's runaway seller The Yacoubian Building (translated by Humphrey Davies), comes to mind.   Xenophobia feeds off ignorance...


Little spider, greet the sun. Don't be down. Give thanks, dear toad, that you are here. The hairy crabs, like roses, all have thorns, and mollusks are reminiscences of women. Know how to be what you are: enigmas that have taken form. Leave responsibilities to the Norm, who will in turn send them on to Heaven. (Sing, cricket: the moon is lit. And, bear, go ahead and dance.) Translation of "Filosofia." Translation copyright 2008 by Gabriel Gudding. All rights reserved.


even ants tremble at nightfall even stones suffer insomnia even moonlight's so polluted men's shadows thin to mist even the mountaintop swells as if ready to blow even the Tang Dynasty fell into decline even in the trashcan people are living even optimists are uncertain how to live even men with fallen shoulders want to leave home even the tiger was beaten down by Wu Song even Wu Song can be scourged for his crimes and put in chains even the law has holes even...

At 30

The first ten years of my life, as the moon exposed its silent craters to my small city far below, the streets filled with shouts, gongs and drums drove out devils, my lame uncle cursed in the yard, and careless, I got kissed by the white rooster's beak. A little girl pulled her pants down before me, and once I ran into the ghost of a suicide on the stairs, but my father raised me high overhead and told me not to fear. Hailstones bounced their lives out on the walk to the...

High Fidelity

They'll be free from the gramophone's pain, its torture from the rub and the needles. Chaste, they'll not know the sin of singing a capella while hungry caught between the farce and the fair. The men who stay at home humming soft melodies will acquire wisdom. A fortunate life, serene happiness will be theirs and their children's. As light as ash. As clear as eternity. For the next poem in this sequence, please click here.


1 Here I am you alone In this mad, gaping Hell Here I am you alone and death altogether With its predators and its seers and the informers Perhaps I am arriving at The limit of my possibilities For you to arrive at the last Dream Flare up until you see me and Become complete until I see you My rose between two fires Inflaming me Hopefully I am inciting wisdom In this ruin I have tried To the end of the flower and the fire, Then, how have they isolated my...

The Fish

I think my heart has never been like this so warm and red. I feel even in the worst moments of this fatal night several thousand sun-springs in my heart surge up from deep certainty. I feel in every nook and cranny of these salt flats of despair several thousand wonderfully wet forests suddenly spring from the earth. * Oh certainty gone astray, oh runaway fish in the ponds of slippery mirror within mirror! I am a clear lagoon; now through the enchantment...
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