Song of the Bound Chickens
The little bond-slave binds our chickens for the market,
And the chickens being bound begin to struggle and proclaim.
The family's up in arms because the chickens eat the ants,
Never thinking that the market means the pot, as far as chickens are concerned.
Ants, chickens; Man, which most deserves concern?
I told the bondman to unbind them.
No end here to the wars of ants and chickens.
I lean in this high place, eyes fixed
To the cold flow, to the River.
And yet how his mournful song moves us.
Out in the grass his cry was a tremble,
But now, he trills beneath our bed, to share his sorrow.
I like still beside you, finding no release:
You, old wife, you suffer quiet through till dawn.
The song of our selves may move us, restless,
Through long nights. The cricket's song of autumn holds us still.
Moon of this night, in Fu-chou,
Alone in your chamber you gaze.
Here, far away, I think of the children,
Too young to remember Longpeace...
Fragrant mist, moist cloud of your hair.
In that clear light, your arms jade cool.
When, again to lean together, by your curtain there,
Alight alike, until our tears have dried.