Even for the well-versed poetry enthusiast, Chinese poetry can begin and end with the short bangs of “The River-Merchant’s Wife.” But we’ve traveled far from Ezra Pound’s translation of that eighth century love letter. The road from Cho-Fu-Sa veers and switchbacks to the White Terror, the Cultural Revolution, Tiananmen Square, sweatshop labor, and Richard Gere’s plea for a free Tibet. Not to mention, the trees dressed according to season and the everyday vicissitudes of light. Edited by Frank Stewart and Fiona Sze-Lorrain, Sky Lanterns: New Poetry from China, Formosa, and Beyond illuminates this complicated terrain with stunning and provocative poems, prose, and photography.
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