About the Author
Books

POETRY  
PROSE
ESSAYS
INTERVIEW
From the book Kliazma and Yauza
From the book The Wild Rose
From the book Tristan and Isolde
From the book Old Songs
From the book Gates. Windows. Arches
From the book Stanzas in the Manner of Alexander Pope
From the book Stellae and Inscriptions
From the book The Iambic Verses
The Chinese Travelogue  
From An Unfinished Book
From the book The Evening Song
From the book Elegies
From the book The Beginning of a Book
The Chinese Travelogue
(1986)

If you could dull its perspicuity, free it from chaos, limit its gleam,
liken it to a grain of dust, then it would seem to exist clearly.
Lao-Tse
12

Perhaps you are the precious ring of the spirit
the stone of blue water,
a voice talking dully
about the terraced gardens.
But look, the winged chariot flies, lamenting,
the wind, the sand, the banks,
the empty ocean.
It’s impossible to say farewell,
and there’s nowhere to say farewell to you.
O person as simple
as salt in sea water, he is not like speech, he is not like a face, he is not
like a word,
only salt with iodine and surf
lamenting to itself
with no one to turn to:
perhaps you are the ring of the spirit
the stone of blue water,
a voice talking dully
about fabled gardens.

Richard McKane

***

12

Maybe you’re the soul’s ring,
the blue water’s stone,
a muffled voice murmuring
about a terraced garden, –
But why has the winged chariot raced with a moan,
wind, shore, a sand dune,
empty sea –
you can’t say adieu
there’s nowhere to part from you.
A simple man –
like salt in sea sprays,
without word, or face, or phrase,
with only the tide, salt and iodine –
having no one in whom to confide
incant internally:
Perhaps you’re the soul’s ring,
the blue water’s stone,
a muffled voice murmuring
about an unimaginable garden.

Andrew Wachtel
1. I was surprised by...
2. The pond speaks...
3. They don’t fall, though they fall...
4. There, on the hill...
5. Do you know...
6. I shall only see...
7. The boat flies...
8. The roofs are raised at the edges...
9. Unhappy...
10. Great is the artist who knows no debt...
11. With tenderness and depth...
 12. Perhaps you are the precious ring of the spirit...
13. Will we really part...
14. Flute answers flute...
15. They say, they have gone on the white road...
16. You know that I love you so much...
17. When we decide to set out...
18. Let us praise our earth...
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