Women Poets of China

By Kenneth Rexroth; Ling Chung | Go to book overview

NIGHT STREET

Withering, shrivelling, dancing,
The wet cold boulevard
Rests after the rain.
A boulevard like a leopard,
Who demands that the night
Give up its melancholy,
Give up its cold silence,
Give up its wind.
A wisp of grass burns in the fire
As dew vanishes in the morning,
You cannot reject the doubt
And perplexity of a virgin.
You can only go straight ahead
Into night's great hall.
Thus, so, the slight smile of the evening clouds
Breaks up into the pebbles of temptation.
A violet of pure love wavers,
And thrusts into the seam.
An automobile presses down the street.
And the street against it falls into night,
Night with linnet in its mouth --
Lamplight, with its fine mist
Splashing me end teasing me --
The street's mysterious secret
Held in the mouth of night.
Wet cold night -- the leopard night,
And all the other forms of night.
Only this higher fullness
Is like a drydock
Which cannot exhale a ship.

TUO SSU

-100-

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