Wang Jianzhao






Crow in the Moonlight


This building is more confined than a coffin

A half step blunder

I’ll go from the corridor of life into the square of death

A Sybil is fleering in silent flowers

The eyes are asleep but the heart is awake


I am writing just like

A crow in the moonlight

The beak knocks a blank sheet

Ominous tail flits across the pied walls

A kissing gate is open

To let imagination’s flesh come in and out freely


The teeth have gone while the tongue is still there

Grandfather’s ghost told me in a low voice

The charming game about the tomb and

A lifelong combat between teeth and tongue

Suppleness encroaches on hardness


The paper before me

Illustrates a great patch of secret blankness

The befalling of a word

Proclaims a nameless miracle


I know I would grow old and die

As a died crow

I cannot smell the fragrance of rosebush

Falling feathers are the disorderly signs


The building collapsed at the moment of morning sunlight

Butterfly in the legend doesn’t appear

I do not turn a hair in writing

As if everything comes from my plot

A feather is inserted obliquely in the place without moonlight



Feb 12, 1997




Snowflakes Are Rotting at Night


The sound of wind engulfs me who has already been assimilated in the north

Withered leaves are driven from pillar to post which are just like defeated soldiers

Together with solitary lamp I am reading the posthumous works of Camoens

Mysterious ancient Portuguese is just like a sealed book

I stretch out my Chinese fingers

To touch the beard of poetry

Loneliness is extraordinary hard like the harden soil

The hardship of existence has infiltrated into language

I give up the game of collocation

And miss the beauty I met in the day

Conjecturing the implication of urbane comportment

Self-revealing undoubtedly is an imprudent adventure

It may be the signpost of love or the tombstone of friendship

Which god cannot judge rashly

I begin to taste the sweetness of desolation in silence

Ache without wound gives people the masochistic pleasure

However, snowflakes are rotting at night

Infamous darkness is engulfing the ultimate whiteness

O beauty is a kind of lethal toxin,

Penetrating into one’s heart more deeply than the upas curare wood



Nov 30, 1997






Room 401, Unit 7,

Near left, wood and iron

Are often neglected by vigilant eyeballs

Immobile frame is like

A quadrate bridge arch

The emptiness all over the world flows

Things and people: it is said that matter is indestructible,

Then, what can a person lose?


Transformation is a cruel game:

…….in, out….

Out, in

……in, out……

The fourth floor’s side sits opposite to the staircase,

Like the crossroad of Robert Frost

It lines out the insidious cross


The angels flutter their wings, making silvery

Rattling sound, the devils put on colored masks,

Swirling and exchanging dancing partners, striving for

My wavering will……


Halting, common fissure leaks mysterious light

At the staircase’s confined corner.

So the good-hearted elderly begin to retrospect

The origin of flesh and

help the depraved guess the destination of soul.


Door reminds the being of lead grey

And the necessity of a lock

And the possibility of a copper key.

The Hasty falling sun

Scribble on the variegated rust

The comparatively concrete threshold

Stumbles my careful abstract.


How much spirit can a poem hold?

Our conscious beauty is incessantly

Polishing and learning the rudimental art of death,

Metamorphosis: simple truth

Revives; grid of characters

Opens a small door one after another again.



Nov 25, 2004




Who is playing Bach


Dusk, one part of globe

Is growing dim,

The moon is rising

With half face,

The black shadow is reproducing in moonlight.


Crowded, shadows push and shovel one another

Pitch-black and hollow.

One sets off which is like

An old political brochure

Turns over to the back cover at last……


One sets off,

The eyes are dry,

The white hair covers the wrinkles and deeply brands

The regrets on the forehead,

The heart has been embarrassedly pressed between

The aperture of truth and falsehood,

And fallen into promised

Immortal fire due to haggardness.

It becomes silence among uproar.


One sets off alone

And becomes a wisp of light smoke

Above embers……


At this moment, faddish pop singers

Imitate talkative parrot,

Rolling their tongues in the loudspeaker of new century.


His voice is just like broken gong

Shouting himself blue in the face, painstakingly

Coercing the sobs of canal.


The north wind drives one hundred gigantic beasts

Walking in the sky

Lamenting and roaring……

The land on both sides of the canal are still silent

As if it is fighting with the shadow

About their individual silence.


Stone, but stone

Scrupulously abides by the duty of a peasant,

There are no flowers,

So I pick a bunch of wild grass to say goodbye,

That is the last pure green which comes from

The faint colored vase.


Empty and black

Is like twin brothers,

They walk into the gateway of midnight together,

Listen: who is playing Bach—-

In the depth of the building?



January 30, 2005




How the leaves lacerate wind


The snow in the fable delays

Again and again,

A cup of coffee on the table last year

Cools in this year’s scale.

My neighbor’s firecrackers imitate customary spring thunder,

And bomb the bald trunk in the yard,

And create hollow boisterous,

And fruitlessly block the cold snap to move towards south.

Wind sucks winter’s sunshine

And crosses the black sweatshirt,

And irrigates every small lacuna,

A drop of water jumps out of the balcony and tries to break

The silence at the dawn, its shout

Solidifies ice block in time’s Adam’s apple.

Solitary tree is outnumbered and let the leaves

Drain the green blood away without stopping,

The leaves are lacerated in the howl of wolf’s wind,

It eddies tragically and splashes down more deftly than butterfly,

The last leaf at the tree top is like

Lonely sigh—fiercely lacerating

The wind, this faintly discernible existence…..



February 4, 2006











Wang  Jianzhao  was  born  in  Huzhou,  Zhejiang  province  in  Oct,  1963.  He  is  professor  at Foreign  Literature  Institute,  Beijing  Foreign  Studies  University.  He  is  the  author  of  Literature Exchange  between  China  and  Russia,  Chinese  Modern  Poetry  in  the  20th  Century,  Biography of  Akhmatova,  Poetry’s  Raven  Age  and  translator  of  Selected  Poems  in  Russian  Silver Times,  The  Destiny  of  Russia,  Selected  Lyrical  Poems  of  Blok,  Selected  Poems  of Poplavsky,  Selected  Russian  Exile  Poems,  Selected  Lyrical  Poems  of  Pushkin,  The  Complete Poems  of  Mandelstam,  An  Anthology  of  Tsvetayeva  and  Selected  Poems  of  Akhmatova.  He writes  poems  in  his  spare  time,  and  his  poems  were  published  on  People’s  Literature, Poetry Monthly,  October,  Poetry  of  Jiang’nan,  Star  Poetry  Journal,  Master  and  Mountain  Flower.  His poems  were  included  in  dozens  of  poetry  anthologies,  collections  and  annual  poetry selections.

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