Magazine article Chinese Literature Today

Mo Du

Magazine article Chinese Literature Today

Mo Du

Article excerpt

Translated by Jia Shi

Mo Du was born in 1965. He is a writer and poet of the Hani ethnic group in China. A member of the Chinese Writers' Association, he won the Sixth China Minority Literature Award for his major work Watching the Village. His other well-known works include the prose poetry collections A Village Gate (Galheiq Galtuv in Hani romanization), Silence, and Go Out in Spring.


Long, black turban. To a Hani man,

this is the most common, most familiar object.

When did the number of men wrapping their turbans grow smaller and smaller?

So often, we just walk about the mountains, exposing our black hair, without wearing a hat. However, this does not mean that we have abandoned the turban.

On this happy day of "Zezhan" (a custom of asking for good fortune and protection), elders in the village gathered in their homes, and the "Mopi" (host of the sacrifice), as leader, fetched the black cloth from the altar, and wrapped my head while softly chanting benedictions. …

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