Divine and mortal love intertwine in this poem by Li Hao, one of a handful of contemporary Chinese poets writing forcefully and overtly about Christian themes.
I invited you too soon
to my city, because I wanted to live
with you, because I wanted
to find in your songs
the Almighty’s power and love. Because I wanted
to know how you loved Him, and your
sweet former lives. I know your
bodies are the language the Lord bestowed upon me.
I see your unfamiliar riverbank
and walk toward you. I decide that I and the rows
of poplars will surround your place of prayer
in a circle wider than the eye can see,
and the quiet lawn is like the sky, invisibly
rippling. On the lambs’ pasture,
you play music, hover, fly out from the light
to protect our fallen loves,
the injured Father in our souls.
"天使们" © Li Hao. By arrangement with the author. Translation © 2019 by Eleanor Goodman. All rights reserved.