By, Zhang Tian-yi
translated by Shu-ying Tsau
The ragged tattered mass of people are making their way across the dirt: the men walk up ahead, the women and children following.
They take a look at the road ahead: a long long road.
They've been walking this road for three days and two nights. From the sun they can tell they haven't gone the wrong way. The road is endless. They look and it seems they have already reached the limit, but then somehow or other the road has been stretched out even longer.
"How long before we get to Liu Village?"
"Should be tomorrow."
With its dips and rises the dirt rolls like waves from the roadside. The sun is buried in the dirt, glowing a flesh-pink. Even so the sun is roasting with a will; their skins have turned a deep purple from the roasting, there even seems to be an odor of something burnt.
"Will there really be food when we get there?"
Everyone's heart leaps. Everyone is starving; they only have some water with them. There was no food at home: their homes have become cannon fodder. Several men at home were hauled off by some Joint Anti-Rebel Force as labor conscripts. With their own eyes they saw their entire crop of wheat trampled flat by those forces.
"What'll we do in Liu Village?"
"Who'll feed us?"
"Might as well die early, damn this agony." a hoarse