The following three poems translated from Liu Xiaobo's poems by Nicolette Wong and oswald chan at the beginning of 2010. The Chinese versions will be attached when they are available.
When I Left—To My Sleeping Wife
When you took my heart
I was already gone.
On that clear autumn day
the shining handcuffs burnt in the sun.
I was being taken far away
to a place you could never find.
But when you woke up, your glance was
scorching my shadow.
The scar of your wound
was torn again and again.
I was astonished at your delicate body.
How could it endure such unexpected and persistent pain?
As the knife broke,
you gripped it.
Astonishment ---- to Xiao Xia
Astonishment is born out of a piece of stone,
of the weeds, the brown spots on the leaves
and the footprints of the beasts.
The sky falls at a strange corner
where the taste of forbidden fruits
is rising like the stars.
Astonishment is born out of a breath,
of the wine sleeping in the glass by itself.
My eyes wide open
they speak of an eternal loneliness.
Hold the world close
as the lamp hovers, drifting east and west.
In doubt there’s only silence—
thirty-six years old
already close to God.
Astonishment is born out of a conjunction.
The naked girl is the two tall glasses
on the sparkling Square cleansed of bloodstains.
Clean up the room. Destroy the evidence.
Pack away your memories.
Faraway from the windows
the ocean is bone white;
it stands between dust and poetry.
Astonishment is different from fear.
Mocking, degrading, it’s closer to despair,
deeper than solemnity.
Sorrow has lost its meaning.
People are laughing.
Let them laugh.
In the Company of Dust ---- to my ever-waiting wife
You have nothing. You wait for me
in the company of dust
which fills every corner of our home—
you don’t want to draw the blinds
for the sunlight to stir
Dust fills the words on the bookshelf
the patterns on the carpet
and your letters to me—
you like to leave traces of dust
with the tip of your pen.
My eyes tingle at the sight of it.
All day you sit still
you refrain from walking
lest you crush the dust at your feet.
You breathe calmly
weaving a story with your silence.
Dust is the your loyal companion
in these suffocating times.
Dust fills your glance, your breath,
your time. Day after day
it piles up from the soles of your feet
to your chest, your throat
it nurses the grave in the depths of your soul.
The grave is your resting place
wait for me where you will be undisturbed.
You’re in love with dust
you wait for me
in darkness, in peace, in suffocation.
Wait for me in the company of dust—
refuse the sun, the breeze,
cocoon yourself in dust.
Sleep until I come back
you will rise
brush away the dust on your skin
in your soul
in a miracle of resurrection.