Poems by Xu Duoyu [China]


Xu Duoyu [China]

About the author:

Xu Duoyu, born in Jinzhai County, Anhui Province in 1983, is an outstanding contemporary poet, novelist and artist in China. He has published more than 20 books, including novels, essays, poems and plays. Some of his poems have been selected in Centennial Series of Chinese New Poetry, Selected Chinese Poetry, Annual Selection of Chinese Poetry, etc. Some of his works have been translated overseas. Some books have been listed on the Sina China Best Books, a must textbook for Chinese language and literature postgraduate examination, and on the major bestseller lists. He has been shortlisted in “Fortune People” and “2010 China Post-80s Writers’ Fortune List”, and has been interviewed and reported by hundreds of media, including Hunan TV’s “More Talk, More Happy”, Beijing TV’s “Perfect Model of Post-80s” of “Hall of Fame”, Anhui TV’s “May 4th Youth New Leaders” of “First Time”, Shanghai TV, China Daily, etc. He is now a freelance writer.

War Machine (and other two poems)


I want to invent a war machine called Peace
It’s the most powerful intelligent weapon in the world
It goes where there is conflict
It will stop all wars

When they pull triggers, the bullets coming out of muzzles
Will be instantly atomized and become fresh air
Letting soldiers panting in nervousness
Easily breathe

Missiles and shells fired from ships and battle fields
Will be completely shattered as they fly toward the top of the parabola
Explosives turn into powdered carbon, compressed into diamonds
Metal shells and warheads will be crushed in a second
Into clouds of iron dust smaller than sand
Like dust falling lightly from the sky
To replenish those mines that are running out

This war machine called Peace
Will appear in every tense battle at the first time
So no one will die any more
When humans can no longer hurt each other
All the hatred will be gone
Among people only compassion and care will be left
Till the end the world is full of love.


The Cold Winter Is Coming

The report says that this winter will be the coldest winter,
The longest winter ever. Chairs will freeze.
Accounts will freeze. All flames will freeze.
Hearts are cold, but desires are still strong.
By then we will sit on benches and pray.
The snow will close all the doors that are open to the outside.
Avalanches will block all roads to freedom.
People still keep extremely calm.
A cold wave from Siberia will sweep across Eurasia
The bitter cold wind will rush into every house, taking away all the heat.
Passions will stop flowing. Beautiful dreams will freeze.
People are struggling in the merciless reality.
Eventually they will become careless and callous ice sculptures,
Keeping icy eyes on the cruelty of war,
Speaking stony words,
Shouting passionate slogans,
And continuing to do cold-blooded things.


The Ruled

As one of the ruled
I’m not qualified
To make any demands
I ask to be ruled
Don’t set me free
I’m scared

(Translated by Zhu Wenjuan)



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