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China’s other world of poetry : three underground poets from Sichuan Day, Michael Martin 1993

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CHINA'S OTHER WORLD OF POETRY; THREE UNDERGROUND POETS FROM SICHUAN by MICHAEL MARTIN DAY B.A., The University of British Columbia, 1985 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Asian Studies) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA October 1993 © Michael Martin Day, 1993  In  presenting  degree  at  this  the  thesis  in  partial  fulfilment  University  of  British  Columbia,  freely available for copying  of  department publication  this or of  reference  thesis by  this  for  his thesis  and study. scholarly  or for  her  of  gain  agree  may  representatives.  financial  shall not  The University of British Vancouver, Canada  Date  DE-6 (2/88)  c  of Columbia  fJctoLy-Jj-  be  It  permission.  Department  requirements  I agree that  I further  purposes  the  that  the  by  understood be  an  advanced  Library shall make  permission  granted  is  for  for  the that  allowed without  it  extensive  head  of  my  copying  or  my  written  11  ABSTRACT  The details of China's underground poetry movement during the 1980s have yet to be fully documented within or without China. This thesis is a first, partial attempt to do so by way of focusing upon three poets of Sichuan province who were both very active and influential in the poetry underground. A relatively close, semi-biographical examination of these three individuals and their poetry reveals some of the artistic and political difficulties of Chinese underground poets in general, and also brings to light the circumstances of underground poets outside of readily accessible (to Western scholars) urban centers, such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. The history of the three poets goes up to and beyond June Fourth 1989. Their responses to June Fourth and the results of the repression which followed, both with regard to their persons and their poetry, offer some insight into the future directions and function of underground poetry and poetry in general in China.  Ill  TABLE OF CONTENTS  Abstract  ii  Table of Contents  iii  Acknowledgement  iv  Chapter 1) AN OVERVIEW OF UNDERGROUND POETRY IN CHINA  1  Chapter 2) LIAO YIWU AND THE CITY OF DEATH  25  Chapter 3) LI YAWEI: THE HARD MAN OF SICHUAN  73  Chapter 4) ZHOU LUNYOU: ON THE KNIFE'S EDGE  99  Chapter 5) CONCLUSION: UNDERGROUND POETRY IN CHINA  143  POSTSCRIPT  155  Glossary for Chapter 1  158  Glossary for Chapter 2  162  Glossary for Chapter 3  166  Glossary for Chapter 4  167  Glossary for Chapter 5  169  Glossary for Postscript  170  Chronological Bibliography of Liao Yiwu's Works  171  Chronological Bibliography of Li Yawei's Works  181  Chronological Bibliography of Zhou Lunyou's Works  189  General Bibliography  199  Appendix 1: Translations  207  Appendix 2: Original Doctunents  345  IV  ACKNOWLEDGEMENT  Due to the "ground-breaking" nature of this thesis, many of my sources of information are not accessible to readers. Much of what I relate is based upon personal collections of relevant material and personal communication during the six years I lived in China as a student, teacher and journalist/ editor between September 1982 and October 1991. I would like to thank the three poets (Liao Yiwu, Li Yawei and Zhou Lunyou) for their friendship and willingness to supply me with an abundance of relevant material and information. I would also like to acknowledge a deep great of gratitude to Tang Xiaodu, who as one of China's foremost critics of post-1976 poetry and as a poet himself and editor of both underground and establishment poetry collections, acted as my mentor and source of materials and information without whom this thesis would not have been possible. I have tried to act as more than a mere "mouthpiece" in writing this thesis. To that end, I have translated the bulk of the poetry which I refer to within the text and have also included photocopies of the original documents themselves in the appendices. Hopefully, readers will be able to avail themselves of these materials and come to their own, possibly different assessments of the work and poets written of within the text. The three poets were not randomly chosen, but are  V  friends, a relationship which allowed me access to material and information, and without which this thesis would not have been possible. I also possess a great deal of materials and information relating to a large number of other poets, most of whom are of my acquaintance, but time and space require that I reserve this material for later work. I am, however, willing to share any of this material with interested readers. I would like to thank Professor George McWhirter, himself a poet and translator, for his assistance in rendering my translations into a form that may be better appreciated by readers without Chinese language ability. Finally, I would like to acknowledge the patience and guidance of Professor Michael Duke. This M.A. was begun in 1985 and this is the third version of it to which he has been subjected. In conclusion, I must admit that this text would not have been forthcoming if not for my involvement in June Fourth-related activities in Beijing and Sichuan in 1989. Ultimately, some months after the arrest of Liao Yiwu, Li Yawei and others on March 25, 1990, I found myself expelled from China on October 31, 1991. Thankfully, my Chinese wife was allowed to follow me to Canada a month later, and international attention was finally centered upon the plight of my friends. It is my belief that this attention forced the Chinese authorities to drop all charges against all those arrested, except Liao Yiwu, in February 1992. (Liao is due to be released on March 25, 1994.) The arrest of my  VI  friends and my expulsion from China are the circumstances which made this thesis possible. Otherwise, I little doubt that I would still be living in China today, writing poetry and not writing about it. I have remained in direct or indirect contact with most of my friends and I hope that I will be allowed to return to China after the release of Liao Yiwu. Needless to say, this thesis is primarily dedicated to the poets of whom I write, but also to the many other poets who have suffered persecution by the hand of the Chinese communist regime since 1949.  Chapter 1) AN OVERVIEW OF UNDERGROUND POETRY IN CHINA  When people think of underground literature under a communist dictatorship, they often think of the former USSR's "self-publishing" (samizdat) network, Alexander Solzhenitsyn and Czechoslovakia's Vaclav Havel, and assume that similar networks or individuals must also exist in China. Others may assume that no such literature exists due to the fact that no news of such has emerged from China in recent years, Apart from clandestine reading of pre-1949 translations of foreign works, banned Chinese literature and the occasional poem written by exceptional individuals, prior to the death of Mao and the fall of the Gang of Four in 1976, there was little home-grown underground literature to speak of in China. What little there was consisted of escapist fiction (romances, detective and spy stories) none of which addressed the political situation of the time^. The first appearance of domestic underground literature on any scale of note occurred during the so-called Beijing Spring of November 1978 - May 1979. Literary journals such as Beijing's Today [Jintian] appeared among numerous unauthorized political journals that were sold at Beijing's Democracy Wall and similar locations in other major Chinese cities. ^Howard Goldblatt and Leo Ou-fan Lee,"The dissenting voice" in Kai-yu Hsu, Literature of the People's Republic of China, (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1980), ppT 911-916.  2 Even though they were illegal, these journals were permitted to exist by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) for as long as politically necessary during Deng Xiaoping's purge of Maoists from the party. In China, all books and magazines receive permission to be published from CCPcontrolled publishing and censorship organs. Once such permission is granted, the management of a publishing house or journal receives a "book number" (shuhao) and a fixed selling price both of which must be printed within the book or journal. Of course, the journals which appeared on China's democracy walls were without these two prerequisites to legality. The term "unofficial" is often used in literature on this subject when referring to these journals.^ Because they were in fact illegal at the time and were finally forced to go underground when all democracy wall journals were banned during the crackdown on the democracy movement in 1979, "underground" would seem to be a more accurate term for these journals and the writers who are published in them. Today was centered around a small group of young poets who had been rusticated high school graduates^ primarily from Beijing, and who had banded together in the wake of ^David S.G. Goodman, Beijing Street Voices, (London: Barion Boyars Publishing Ltd. 1981). ^Youths sent to work in the countryside from major Chinese cities upon graduation from high school between the years 1969-1976 (known as ^'zhishi qingnian" in Chinese).  3 the April Fifth Movement in 1976."* Bei Dao is the best known and most influential of the Today poets. His poem "The Answer" [Huida]-' and its refrain "I don't believe ..." marked an important turning point in the history of China's "new poetry" (xinshi).^ Hitherto forbidden themes of alienation, humanism, a striking use of personal symbolism and imagery, and a pervasive spirit of scepticism distinguished the best of this poetry from the staid, realist verse which after 1949 had been dominated by the CCP-dictated national mood and political ideology. In April 1980' the Today poets and their many fellow ^ The date of China's Qing Ming festival when the graves of ancestors are traditionally swept. On this date in 1976, thousands of people converged on the Memorial to the Martyrs of the Revolution in Tian'anmen square to offer wreaths and poems in honour if Zhou Enlai, the former premier of China who had died earlier in the year. Soon, anti-Gang of Four and anti-Cultural Revolution poems and speeches were being read. After warning people to leave the square during the day, the authorities moved in to make mass arrests in the evening, and, according to participants and witnesses, several people were killed (estimates rise from a few score to over one thousand). The redefinition of this incident as "revolutionary" by Deng Xiaoping and the new CCP leadership in 1978 led to the rise of the democracy movement in that year. (The 1976 movement is known as the "Wusi yundong" in Chinese.) ^ "The Answer", in Michael S. Duke, editor. Contemporary Chinese Lit-erature, (New York; A.E. Sharpe Inc., 1985), p. 41. (Appendix pp. %XOS r * ^H •) ^ A term which refers to poetry written in the vernacular language (spoken Mandarin Chinese). Prior to 1917 all poetry ha been written in the classical written language which bore little relation to vernacular speech and thus was beyond the grasp of those (the majority) who had insufficient education. ' The date of a national poetry conference convened in Nanning, Guangxi province, at which the overwhelming tone of debate about Today poetry was negative. This led to a rebuttle in defense of Today poetry by Xie Mian in the  4 travellers who had sprung up all over China, were termed "obscure" or "misty" (menglong) poets as a result of their use of personal symbolism and other literary devices not common to post-1949 poetry. Older poets and readers of establishment poetry who did not share the experiences and background of rusticated youths, and whose faith in communism was not yet shattered, found Misty poetry incomprehensible, if not subversive. The term "Misty poetry" {menglong shi) was initially used as a term of abuse by establishment critics in essays attacking the poetry of the Today group. Only poetry which praised and bolstered the spirit of the nation (minzu) and the CCP, poetry which is of the people and by the people ("the people" here is used in a traditional communist sense as referring to those people who are deemed to be supportive or useful to the revolution or the party), and in the service of the CCP could hope to encapsulate truth, goodness and beauty in their poetry." The source of this enmity can be traced back to Mao Zedong's "Talks at the Yan'an forum on literature and art" in May 1942. Since 1949, while interpretations of Mao's comments have varied with changes in the political climate, this document has been, and is still, held over the heads of all Chinese Guangminq Daily [Guangming ribao] in May and sparked off a debate which continues to .this day. A reluctant acceptance of sorts by the CCP establishment was granted in 1984 when the first of many Misty poetry anthologies was published. ^ See Ai Fei,"Huhuan shihun" [Call out the spirit of poetry], Shikan [Poetry monthly], (Beijing, March 1992), pp. 46-54, for a typical recent critical attack on all Misty and third generation poetry.  5 artists, writers and poets in an effort to have them produce morally uplifting, educational art and literature in a realist mode (socialist and revolutionary realism). The first sentence of Mao's "Talks" set the tone for what was to follow in the text itself and over the years since 1942: "The purpose of our meeting today is precisely to fit art and literature properly into the whole revolutionary machine as one of its component parts, to make them a powerful weapon for uniting and educating the people and for attacking and annihilating the enemy and to help the people to fight the enemy with one heart and one mind....."'* Mao went on to state: "Our standpoint is that of the proletariat and the broad masses of the people. "-^^ And "the people", who constituted over 90 per cent of the population according to Mao, were the workers, peasants and soldiers (a holy trinity referred to by the shorthand Chinese term "gong-nong-bing"), and the "... working masses of the urban petty bourgeoise together with its intelligentsia, who are also allies in the revolution and are capable of lasting cooperation with us."^^ Plainly, poets and other artists were required to fall into line with the party if they were to be welcomed into a CCP-controlled China. During wars against the Japanese, the Nationalists, the Americans (in Korea and Vietnam), in addition to continuous ** Mao Zedong, "Talks at the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art", in Kai-yu Hsu, Literature of the People's Republic of China, (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1980), p. 29. ^" Ibid. ^^ Ibid., 31.  6 class warfare until 1976, the line which they had to toe was drawn both clearly and conservatively during most of those 34 years. Therefore, the fact that Today was merely banned and none of its poets arrested and sent to labour camps, as would have been the case in previous years, indicated that some measure of tolerance now existed within the CCP literary establishment. Further evidence of this came in the form of several articles in defense of Misty poetry written by such noted establishment poetry critics as Xie Mian and Sun Shaozhen. Bei Dao's "The Answer" was the first piece of Misty poetry to be published in an establishment journal —  the  March 1979 issue of China's preeminent poetry journal, Beijing's Poetry Monthly [Shikan]. Several other pieces of his work and that of other Misty poets such as Shu Ting, Gu Cheng, Jiang He, Mang Ke and Yang Lian, began to appear in establishment literary journals throughout China in the months that followed. In Fall 1983, as part of the campaign to "eliminate spiritual pollution" (qingchu jingshen wuran) launched in order to combat the spread of "bourgeois liberalism" from the West, an all-out attack was begun by establishment critics against humanism, alienation and the use of modernist techniques in Chinese literature in general and Misty poetry in particular. However, by this time it was already too late, the damage the CCP sought to prevent had already been done.  7 Between 1979 and 1983, a larger number of still younger poets (generally 5-10 years younger than Misty poets) in all parts of China had been reading and emulating Misty poetry and formerly forbidden Western poetry. By 1983 they had begun to find their own, very different voices and the emergence of what has become known as "third generation poets" (disan dai shiren) or "the second tide of poetry" (dierci shichao) began. Other terms occasionally used are "post-Misty poetry" (hou menglong shi), "the new born generation" (xinshengdai) and "the fifth generation." The term "the second tide of poetry" can be readily understood coming as it did in the wake of the "tide" of Misty poetry. "The third generation," however, is somewhat more problematic in that there are three of four possible definitions of the term. For the purposes of this paper, the third generation is best understood as following after two generations of poets who experimented with modernist techniques in Chinese poetry: poets such as Li Jinfa and Dai Wangshu in the 1920s and 1930s, and Misty poets such as Bei Dao, Mang Ke and Wang Xiaoni in the 1970s.^^ In part, the rise of third generation poets was a response to what they viewed as the unacceptable dualistic aspect of Chinese poetry —  either establishment poetry or  Misty poetry. The third generation's dissatisfaction with ^^Zhu Lingbo, "Disan dai shi gaiguan" [A general perspective of third generation poetry], Guandong wenxue yuekan [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan, Jilin prov.: June 1987), pp. 43-44.  8 both types of poetry can be traced to pronounced generation gap between these poets and earlier ones. While Misty poetry tended to belong to the "literature of wounds" (shanghen wenxue) that dwelled on the pains and evils of the Cultural Revolution (CR) which was also the formative period of these poets, third generation poets experienced a relatively liberal (by Chinese standards), rapidly changing social environment during the late 1970s and early 1980s, and their poetry was a reflection of this background. In his preface to a recent anthology of third generation poetry,^^ Tang Xiaodu, one of China's most knowledgeable critics of post-1976 poetry, offers a useful comparison of the different social-political circumstances and attitudes which differentiate third generation poets from Misty poets: - Misty poetry was a manifestation of antagonism directed against the unified ideological front which had existed in all areas of Chinese society prior to 1976. The third generation, on the other hand, evolved out of a society on the road to pluralism (in the realm of the arts in any case) which had witnessed the collapse of Marxism. - Misty poets had limited choices in terms of form and content as a result of the CCP's tight control over culture prior to the 1980s. The third generation, however, enjoyed the possibility of several choices in the environment of ^ Tang Xiaodu editor, Deng^tinrong xinqfu de wudao — hou menqlonq shi xuancui [The happy dance of the light filament — A selection of post-Misty poetry], (Beijing shifan daxue chubanshe [Beijing teachers university publishing house], July 1992), pp. 1-8.  9 relative cultural liberality which accompanied Deng Xiaoping's opening to the outside world in 1979. - Misty poetry evinced the serious crisis of values in Chinese society in the wake of the CR which had done so much to destroy the value system that the CCP had been attempting (and is still trying) to inculcate. By the time of the rise of the third generation, values of any kind were at best loose or were far removed from the realities of everyday life. - In the wake of the CR, many Chinese artists attempted to reintroduce human and spiritual e3 ements into commonly held morality as a direct response to the ideological and physical excesses of the preceding years. By the mid-1980s however, morality was rapidly becoming just another commodity, an object like any other that could be bought or sold when the price was right. As a result of these different backgrounds, the poetry of the two periods also exhibited very different mental attitudes: - Misty poetry was suffused with humanism, thoughts on human nature and lyrical strength, while third generation poetry put greater emphasis on the primal state of the life of the individual. - The earlier poets enjoyed the lofty feelings engendered by their pursuit of freedom. The later poets, on the other hand, had to endure the weightless feeling that accompanies freedom attained, even if, by Western standards, this  10 freedom was still of a strictly limited variety. - Misty poets were brought together by a universally held, healthy spirit of scepticism as evinced in Bei Dao's "The Answer." The sense of responsibility felt by Misty poets (lacking feelings of shared-guilt, however) was torn asunder by the self-centered, individual nature of third generation poetry which was questing after a deeper exploration of individual circumstances, perception and language. "Man" was no longer a concept writ large as it ha«l been by much Misty poetry as poets strove to empower the Self with the dignity and respect lost to poetry during the preceding decades, but was now writ small by the third generation, in part as a reflection of a rejection of the romantic-heroic stance of much misty-poetry and in recognition of the insignificance and powerlessness of the individual in China's modernizing state. - Finally, Misty poetry was suffused with a tragic consciousness which accompanied the poet's revolt against alienation. Third generation poetry, however, was characterized by the sort of empty feeling which results from the acceptance of alienation and from the poet perceiving .himself as an outsider. As free individuals perceiving themselves to be outside all establishment conventions, third generation poets were also free to create or destroy poetry. There were no limitations on what could be written or on how it could be written. Everything but politics, which has been left to  11 establishment poets, was fair game thematically. Any and all forms of diction were now the language of poetry. Standards were those which the poet set for himself based on his understanding of the modern masters (in translation or otherT*ise) and the often short-lived influence of other third generation poets. Third generation links with any form of literary tradition are tenuous at best. It was easy to assail the ideological and formal constraints of the CCP literary establishment's socialist- and revolutionary-realism, and to revolt against Misty conventions and style, but much more difficult to locate a literary tradition from which to work out of themselves. Not surprisingly, this has resulted in a great deal of confusion over the importance of literary tradition, the poet's relationship with it, and even over what the term "tradition" actually refers to. Recently published comments by the third generation poet, Han Dong, are indicative of the unique difficulties China's young poets are forced to deal with: " Each writer gets his start from reading. Today, therefore, convincing and authoritative works are naturally translated works. We all feel deeply that there is no tradition to rely upon, the great Chinese classical literary tradition seems to have already become invalid. Actually this is in fact the case, with the exception of the 'great classical spirit' (weida de gudian jingshen), concrete works and the classics have already been cut off from us with regard to the written language. They are of no use to the writing of today. And the so-called spirit of the classics, if it has lost the immediacy of the written word, necessarily lapses into mystical interpretation and speculation. This point is not only obvious, but it is also gladly admitted  12 to by all. In fact, we have already become orphans of literary tradition. "In search of solace, by coincidence everyone turned to the West. In order to strengthen oneself and also to 'move towards the world' (zouxiang shijie), how to graft oneself onto the Western literary tradition has become the direction of the efforts of very many poets today. Unfortunately, this effort can only be arrived at indirectly through translated works. In terms of written texts, we study translated works and aftearwards write similar things imitatively. Later, they must still be translated once again into English or other languages and promoted to the West in order to capture an 'international market' (guoji shichang). "...So as to remedy gaps in logic, poets have expounded an illusion: namely so-called 'cosmopolitanism' (shijiezhuyi). They think of themselves as first being a member of the human race, only afterwards are they born into a particular nationality and use a particular language in writing. In my opinion this is merely a kind of moral defense and incapable of changing the [fact of] isolation from the [Chinese] written language... "Learning from translated works is the same as learning from classical literature. It can be one of our sources of inspiration. We may speculate about and imagine the spirit, the interpretations and all the possibilities which lie behind the concrete written words "^^  Here we find new evidence of what Professor Lin Yusheng has dealt with in some detail in his book "The Crisis of Chinese Consciousness: Radical Antitraditionalism in the May Fourth Era" (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1979). Lin shows how, in fact, antitraditional writers often attacked tradition apparently unaware that they themselves were still within it. In fact, the argument has been made that this behavior is in itself part of that tradition. How, ^*Han Dong and Zhu Wen, "Guzha bitan" [Conversation about writing by the ancient dam], Zuojia wenxue yuekan [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: April 1993), p. 71.  13 for instance, can the modern Chinese language which derives from and still retains elements of the classical language be said to be entirely unrelated or incomprehensible? And how does tradition become mere 'inspiration' when a poet clearly goes back to it for thematic or linguistic material? Most post-1976 poets, and the majority of educated Chinese for that matter, have read and continue to read the masterpieces of China's classical tradition. That tradition must surely be of more importance and more accessible than that of the West. This state of apparently profound confusion will be further illustrated in a number of poems dealt with in the following chapters. Han's views also go some way towards explaining why China's underground poets have a tendency to form groups around poetry journals or otherwise. Some groups were loosely based on friendships, charismatic individuals, general poetic tendencies or commonly held (if not practiced) poetic theories. In the USSR, for example, there was only one recorded attempt to create an underground literary journal prior to the mid-1980s.^^ Perhaps, the continued strength of and accessibility to Russian literary tradition is one of the reasons for this apparent anomaly there, and the lack of such a tradition one of the reasons behind the tendency to group together in China. ^^Edward J. Brown, Russian Literature Since the Revolution, (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1982), p. 342.  .14 However, as a rule, associations of this kind tended to be temporary. Above all, the poet was a free, independent being who moved wherever his spirit and physical circumstances led him —  more often than not he felt he was alone and speaking  of and to himself. Having said that third generation poets were opposed to the romanticism and heroic stance of many Misty poets, it should be pointed out that this did not preclude romanticism in their own poetry. However, given the much apparent insignificance and powerlessness of the individual and that individual's self-perceived position as an outsider within Chinese society, a situation which in itself lead to the great increase in the numbers of underground poets during the mid-1980s, many third generation poets turned to an anti-heroic stance. Self-assertion remained an important element, but now the focus was shifted from that of the Misty poets upon the human condition and society in general to a focus upon the specific details and circumstances of life and poetry. Individual truth supplanted Misty attempts to speak truth for a generation. The first of the third generation underground journals were Nanjing's Them [Tamen], Sichuan's Modern Poetry Internal Exchange Materials [Xiandai shige neibu jiaoliu ziliao] and Macho Man [Manghan] which all appeared in 1984. Having been published without book numbers, these journals were banned immediately upon discovery by the authorities, not because of subversive  15 political content, for there was none, but due primarily to the illegality of truly free expression and, secondarily, due to an intolerance for the poetic themes and diction of third generation poetry. However, this form of repression did not result in a reduction of the number of such publications, but in a plethora of new titles as old groups dissolved after journals were banned and then reformed again in the same or new forms under new titles. It was, after all, only a simple matter of searching out a small printing operation which suffered more from economic need than fear of the authorities. Furthermore, it was only a minor inconvenience if the printing was done in towns or provinces other than the ones in which the editors resided. For example, between December 1984 and May 1986, six of China's most influential underground poetry journals of the time came out of Sichuan despite what were arguably the most repressive conditions for underground poets in all of China: 1) Macho Man, Wan Xia editor-in-chief, Chengdu, December 1984; 2) Modern Poetry Internal Exchange Materials, Wan Xia editor-in-qhief, Chengdu, January 1985; 3) Each Day New [Ririxin], Bai Hua, Zhou Zhongling editors, Chongqing, March 1985; 4) Chinese Modernist Experimental Poetry [Zhongguo xiandai shiyan shi], Yang Shunli, Lei Mingchu editors, Fuling, July 1985;  16 5) Han Poetry [Han shi], Shi Guanghua, Liu Taiheng, Song Qu, Song Wei, Zhang Yu editors, Chengdu, May 1986; 6) Not-Not [Feifei], Zhou Lunyou editor-in-chief, Xichang-Chengdu, May 1986.  By mid-1986 a small number of establishment literary journals had begun to publish third generation poetry on a regular basis. The latter half of the year was marked by the official third generation coming-out party in the pages of the Shenzhen Youth Daily [Shenzhen gingnian bao] and The Poetry Press [Shige bao] of Hefei, when the Misty poet and poetry critic Xu Jingya organized "The 1986 Grand Exhibition of Modern Chinese Poetry Groups" [1986 Zhongguo xiandaishi qunti dazhan].^^ Of the eighty-four "groups" (qunti) featured, many were in fact individuals masquerading as such (like Beijing's "Xichuanti" consisting of the poet Xi Chuan), or small groups consisting of two or three poets who came together just for the occasion (such as the "New Traditionalism" [Xin chuantongzhuyi] of Sichuan's Liao Yiwu and Ouyang Jianghe). Most of the "groups" were represented by an abbreviated manifesto and one or more poems. There was a method to this apparent madness, or sickness as many establishment critics later termed it. At the base of all this loud clamoring, was a demand to be recognized as •^^ A joint edition published in newspaper broadsheet format on October 21, 1986 and available nationwide through The Poetry Press distribution network.  17 poets and to be taken seriously in China. Unfortunately, not all of the participants shared this goal and the resulting confused array served to obscure some fine poetry and allowed establishment critics to dismiss the lot as immature, talent-poor boors. During a short period of time in the mid-1980s, it seemed that all the modernist and post-modernist experiments with form and content were flooding from the West into China in a mad rush to catch up, to become part of the worldwide community of poetry once again. The same rush to catch up was occurring in many other areas of Chinese life, "The Grand Exhibition" was merely a graphic representation of the chaos which existed in the realm of poetry. Translations of recent foreign poetry and new translations or new editions of old translations of foreign classics, both ancient and modern, had begun to flood China's bookstores and establishment literary journals in the early 1980s. Taken together with the influence and significance of Today and Misty poetry, the resulting explosion should have come as no surprise. In 1986, when modernist and post-modernist foreign verse and poetics were being published regularly in all parts of China, a response from China's younger poets was to be expected. The apparently favourable turn of events in 1986 came to an abrupt halt in January 1987 when CCP General Secretary, Hu Yaobang was forced to resign his post and a campaign against "bourgeois liberalization" in the arts resulted in  18 tight editorial policies weighted against third generation poetry. National examples were made of Liao Yiwu and Yi Lei, two poets whose work had been published in the combined number 1-2 issue of People's Literature [Renmin wenxue].^' Their poems were held up as examples of the kind of poetry that was not to be published in China: Liao's poem was too dark, obscure and obscene, and Yi Lei's was considered overly lewd. At the same time, harassment of the editors of underground poetry journals was stepped up. The first campaign against illegal publications and pornography since the 1950s, campaigns which are now annual events, began in early 1987. Underground poetry journals were specifically targeted as illegal publications. During 1987, third generation poetry disappeared from the pages of establishment literary journals, the onJy references to their existence appeared in numerous articles condemning their poetry. In 1988, however, the cultural atmosphere in China was once again sufficiently liberal to allow third generation poetry to begin reappearing in establishment journals and in books of poetry. By the summer of 1989, third generation underground poetry journals appeared to have attained for their poets results comparable to those which Today had for Misty -^ ^Renmin wenxue [People's-Literature], ( Beijing, 1987 no. 1-2): Yi Lei, "Dushen nuren de woshi" [The bedroom of a single woman], pp. 51-54; Liao Yiwu, "Sicheng" [The city of death], pp. 58-62.  19 poets. The journals had brought third generation poets and poetry to the attention of other poets and poetry critics. This led to limited penetration of the establishment-controlled print media and public discussion of their poetry, and gave third generation poetry access to a broader poetry-reading public. However it was not until 1992, six years after the third generation was a weJ1-established fact in China, that any attempt was made to introduce their poetry to readers outside of China. The Spring 1992 edition of Renditions, a Chinese literature translation journal published in Hongkong, featured the translated poetry of nine third generation poets under the title of "Post-Misty Poetry."^** Third generation poetry is characterized in a brief introductory essay as a "reorientation ... in three directions [in the aftermath of the Misty poetry reorientation] —  inward to explore consciousness and the  subconscious, outward to reveal the beauty of triviality and existential absurdity, and finally upward to encompass the realm of metaphysics and the prophetic vision. ""^'^ A fourth direction not mentioned here is a "downward" shift into language and the poetic text itself, a trend which began in 1986 and has gained considerable momentum since that time. One other aspect which the translator-authors mention Li Fukang and Eva Hung, "Post-Misty Poetry," RenditionsT No. 37, Spring 1992, Hongkong, pp. 93-151. ~ -^^Ibid., p. 98.  20 only jn passing is what Chinese critics call the escapist tendency of third generation poetry. The authors point out that the "internal" poets "sublimate a reality that is already experienced as harsh and intense,"^" that in the work of "external" poets "depressing reality is side-stepped, its intensity diluted and even dissolved,"^^ and that "upward" oriented poets "deal with reality through visionary and metaphysical abstractions."^^ It is precisely these preoccupations which often reduce third generation poetry to triviality and experimental gamesmanship, but it is also this very trend which has allowed tJieir poetry to become somewhat acceptable within the CCP poetry establishment. Reference to China's "depressing," "harsh and intense" reality begs the question, where is China's poetry of witness, testament or protest? The poetry of most third generation poets bears few traces of extremity. There seems to be litt]e impuJse to deal with the personal and social problems rampant in China today, or to address such fundamental issues as human rights, the continuing lack of certain basic liberties such as the freedom to publish or to speak on any subject which the CCP lists as being taboo. This aversion, this fear of all things even vaguely political in the context of the CCP dictatorship over thought and the arts is the reason why the mad rush to catch ""Ibid., p. 95. ^^Ibid., p. 96. ^^Ibid., p. 97.  ~~  21 up, to be modern and post-modern over the past ten years has resulted in the production of a large number of pallid, forced imitations oi Western models. In some cases, however, the adaptation and use of modernist techniques and forms have met with success, but this success is achieved in the context of conscious or unconscious self-limitation which is often embodied Jn an attitude of neutrality in itself anathema to the true spirit of modernist, post-modernist or any other form of what might be considered serious art. Before 1989 there was no poetry of witness, testament or dissent among third generation poets. The scepticistn, the doubting consciousness and the spirit of humanism which permeated the best Misty poetry have been replaced by some troublesome attitudes. Misty poetry was addressed to the age of the Maoist dictatorship, but once it had disappeared and all that remained was the naked apparatus of brute force, the all-embracing utilitarianism championed by Deng Xiaoping and the re-emergence with a vengeance of age-old traditions and thought to mix with those of the CCP and the West, younger poets were swept away in the flood and unable or unwilling to respond. Without-cojranonly held beliefs, values and ideals, and with a growing tendency toward a neutral poetic "purity," nihilism and anarchy appear as the over-arching characteristics of the third generation. Yang Xiaobin, in a critical review of third generation  22 poets,^^ attempted to demonstrate that an analysis of the posture or role which a poet adopts and manifests through his poetic diction is proof of political tendencies among all poets. Yang proceeded to suggest that, third generation poets fall into six general categories: "rebellious" (panshi) and "submissive" (shunshi), "escapist" (dunshi) and "dismissive" (qishi), "pJayful" (wanshi) and "enlightening" (qishi). Given the highly politicized nature of Chinese society, in which any action or inaction may be judged as political by the apparatus of CCP power, such a system of classification allows a better understanding of the political nature of third generation poets and an expJanation as to why they have been laced with such difficulties. It should come as no surprise that the submissive, escapist, dismissive and the more abstract "enlightening" third generation poets are those who arc most acceptable to the CCP literary estabJ ishirient (all nine poets translated in "Post Misty Poetry" fall into these catt-jgories, and yet all were or still are underground poets). The Tian'anmen Mcassacre of June 4, 1989 proved to be a watershed for China's underground poets. Many felt that as anti- or non-est^ablishment poets they had an obligation to respond to the situation. However, most ]ost the impulse to ^^Yang Xiaobin, "Bengkui de shiqun — dangjin xianfeng shige de yuynn yu zitai" [The poets of collapse — the language and posture of contemporary avant-garde poetry], Zuojia wenxue yuekan [Author literary monthly], (Changchun: September 1989), pp. 63-73.  23 act as a result of prolonged, circumspective contemplation during the summer of that year.^^ For these poets, self-imposed silence was the only answer they could muster. While their professed neutrality or revulsion at all matters political was called into doubt, and while they did feel an urge to break free of their hidden shackles, almost all did no more than ponder the issue and their feelings as they shifted uncomfortably under the weight of impending responsibility. After a respectful period of silence, most third generation poets picked up where they had left off  —  habit, social and material pressures, and fear ultimately won out over their initial reactions of outrage and horror, and pangs of conscience. A number of these poets, faced with their inability to respond, gave up writing poetry entirely. A very small number of these underground poets, however, gave immediate voice to their feelings (such as Liao Yiwu in "Slaughter" [Tusha] parts III & I V ) , some were ultimately forced to confront the issue after they were arrested during the crackdown that followed the massacre (such as Zhou Lunyou in his "Red Writing" [Hongse xiezuo] and "Twenty Poems on the Knife's Edge" [Daofeng ershishou]^^), and still others followed up on their emotions at a later date, but not necessarily in the form of poetry (such as Li Yawei ^''These observations are based on my discussions with numerous third generation poets in various parts of China during the summer of 1989 'and in the months before my expulsion from China in October 1991. ^"Feifei [Not-Not] No. 5 (underground journal). Fall 1992. (Appendix pp. # 274-344, # 587.)  24 who participated in the creation of the Song of the Silent Spirits [Anling qu] video based on Liao Yiwu's "Slaughter" in February-March 1990). The remainder of this thesis will deal with the three poets noted above and examine what made them underground poets, how they developed as poets through the 1980s, and their reactions to the Tian'anmen Massacre. A closer study of the weaknesses and strengths, ambitions and difficulties of these poets will lead to a clearer understanding of what it was to be both an avant-garde and an underground poet in China during the 1980s, and offer some insight into possible future developments.  25 Chapter 2) LIAO YIWU AND THE CITY OF DEATH  "Through me the way into the suffering city. Through me the way to the eternal pain. Through me the way that runs eunong the lost."^ These three lines are emblazoned on the title page of the final, revised version of "The Master Craftsman" [Jujiang], Liao Yiwu's anti-epic poem. Almost all the poetry written by Liao after 1984 takes the point of view of these three lines; all the pain and suffering of mankind in general, of the Han Chinese and the poets of that nation are sifted through Liao's soul and flow like tears onto the pages of his poetry. No other Chinese poet of recent times has attempted such a feat, much less sustained it for as long or so consistently as Liao. Perhaps predictably, Liao's sustained sensitivity lead to a personal poetic apocalypse —  the final two sections of "Slaughter" [Tusha] written by  Liao on the fourth and fifth of June 1989. Liao is unique among third generation underground poets in this respect. While others focused on intellectualphilosophical details, existential circumstances and absurdities, Liao was developing a poetry centered upon the concept of a universal spirit or soul (fanling guan). Liao discovered within himself a channel to this creator or spirit of the universe, which he mined exclusively and obsessively between 1984 and 1989. Predictably, his themes ^ Dante, The Divine Comedy; Inferno, Canto III, lines 1-3.  26 ranged from the universal to the national and to the highly personalized torment and solitude of the poet-creator, who like the master creator (or master craftsman) is also alienated from his work the moment the process of creation has been completed and written language, like man, takes on a life of its own. Presumably, of course, the creator is not subject to limitations, unlike the poet who is limited by perception, language and mortality. Like Dylan Thomas (a major, direct influence on Liao) and Blake before him, the imagery of Liao's poetry is elemental —  of birth, energy, sex and death. This is the  cycle to which mankind has been condemned since creation and which has taken on tragic overtones ever since mankind began to aspire to the status of creator —  a transformation  which occurred when man achieved self-awareness or, in Liao's terms, when man emerged from the ocean of his mother's belly. Liao does more than give voice to the dirges which spring from his soul, but also to the songs of his glands and nerves in an effort to free his poetry of what he, like Dylan Thomas, felt was poetically sterile reason. Liao's life experience plays an important role in his development as a poet. Born June 1958 in Sichuan's Yanting county, Liao was effectively denied a university education as a result of the CR. During the latter half of the 1970s and the early 1980s, Liao worked at a variety of jobs, ranging from common laborer to work-camp cook to longdistance lorry driver. He had enjoyed poetry since his  27 childhood and began to try his hand as a writer of poetry during this period, in particular during his years as a truck diver in the Sichuan basin and on the Tibetan plateau. The quality of his verse and his powerful imagination gained for Liao the attention of a number of ^respected establishment poets in Chengdu, the provincial capital, where Liao resided at that time. Liu Shahe and Bai Hang (editor-in-chief of Stars Poetry Monthly [Xingxing shikan]) were two of the better known poets whom Liao asked or who offered advice and instruction. Liao's poems began to appear on a regular basis in Sichuan's literary journals during 1982, and in February 1984 his work appeared for the first time in China's largest and most influential establishment poetry journal. Poetry Monthly of Beijing. The poetry of this early period was often rooted in the people and places of Liao's experience with titles such as "The Great Basin" [Da pendi], "The High Plateau" [Da gaoyuan], "The Bamboo-shoot Digger" [Wasun de ren] and "The People" [Renmin]. Liao's style was a blend of romanticism and realism, but recurrent themes of 'death' and 'distant travel' hinted at what would follow. Already there was an interest in the ineffable spirit of the universe:  "One person May perhaps gather in A rare pearl of the world of man But is not certain of capturing The soul of a little blade of grass"^  28 Here the reader is given a hint of Liao's future inclination towards metaphysical themes and a tendency to devalue the world of man in the face of the far greater mysteries of the universe. Far away from Sichuan's teeming basin, on Liao's "High Plateau," the poet is able to vividly imagine the universe as a living, breathing thing where true creativity occurs on a massive integrated scale. The wind howls its prowess and music can be felt to flow from the stars. When "we" (mankind) can hear and feel the universe, then we are also atie to become a true part of it:  And then often when we imagine that spring has come, even late at night when a boastful wind is making a great noise Deep in the bowels of the earth we imagine a liquid spring welling up, warmly shooting through the great belly The earth's temperature gradually rising We're used to wild notions, used once the high plateau is quiet to Feeling music flowing forth from the starry mouths of flutes. We believe any myth We even believe ourselves to be small pieces of sky scattering over the high plateau"^ The influence of Walt Whitman is evident in both Liao's imagery (th.e sexually charged forces of nature) and long line. Poems such as "The People," "The Great Basin" and ^ "Yuanxingzhe" [The Distant Traveller], in Tang Xiaodu, Buduan chonqlin de qidian [The Ever-recurring Starting Point], (Beijing: Wenhua yishu chubanshe [Culture and Arts Publishing House), September 1989, p. 51. ^ Appendix pp. #310 , #3 + 9.  29 "Fatherland, Era of the Sons" [Zuguo, erzimen de niandai] attempt to capture the powerful overtones and clumsy eloquence of Whitman's odes to America, progress and democracy. Whitman's attempt to embody the newness of America and its freedom from the shackles of European tradition in verse appears to have impressed Liao, who like many others read Leaves of Grass in translation for the first time a^ter the CR. At the time he may have viewed post-CR China, where links to cu3tural tradition must also have seemed tenuous, as being ripe for the visitation of the long-absent creative spirit also sung of by Whitman. By 1984, on the strength of these poems, Liao's reputation as an establishment poet was firmly established. Prior to 1989, it was the poems of this earlier period which were awarded a number of establishment poetry prizes and were anthologized in numerous poetry collections. Liao's involvement with underground poetry began in early 1984 when his poem "The Hat" [Maozi] was published in The Same Generation [Tongdai]. In an attempt to take up the mantel of Today which had finally ceased to publish in 1983, The Same Generation included new poems by the Today poets Bei Dao and Yan Li. Primarily, however, this mimeographed journal gave pride of place to the new experimental poems of those who were later to form the backbone of the third generation; Han  30 Dong^ who went on to found Them in Nanjing together with Kunming's Yu Jian; Wang Yin, Lu Yimin and Chen Dongdong of Shanghai who later went on to help found On The Sea [Haishang] and Continent [Dalu]; and various other notable poets such as Beijing's Niu Bo and Xi'an's Daozi. Liao's poem was a radical departure from his earlier Whitmanesque free verse form. Now, instead of merely hinting at a spirit of the universe which man is only able to get a fleeting glimpse of, Liao has open access to it via the souls of the dead, which according to Sichuan legend roost in the hair of the living. This is Liao's hat and it allows him to surpass time, nature, society and man and wander freely over the earth. The poet gains a new appreciation of life —  life which appears towards the end of the poem in  the form of a maiden. She appears again, but this time as Liao's nearest and dearest companion in his 1984 long lyric. Lovers [Qinglu]. However, now she is the terrible, tyrannical lover who never, not even after corporeal death, releases one from one's vows: "Never ending  is this destined to be? Onward onward onward on the solid earth, until flesh fades away and the soul continues on, soberly walking on over the vast white continent  * Han Dong's "Of the Wild Goose Pagoda" [Youguan Dayanta], written in 1983 and published here, is said by some critics to be the first true third generation poem to be published in the establishment press.  31 unapproachable love Oh such unapproachable love"^ "Lovers" was initially published in what was to be the first of four compendium-style underground journals compiled primarily by experimental modernist poets from Chengdu and Chongqing between 1984 and 1987. Modern Poetry Internal Exchange Materials^ which also bore the english name Modernist's Federation, was printed in Chengdu in January 1985 with art work and a quality of printing which matched or surpassed establishment journals of the time. The Chinese name of the journal was a device which the editors hoped would allow the journal to escape the attentions of the authorities. The journal's title indicated that it would be "internal" reading material for members of the "Sichuan Young Poets Association" (Sichuansheng qingnian shiren xiehui) which had been formed principally among college students and young poets in Chengdu and Chongqing during 1984. The association claimed to have already elected a president, four vice-presidents and a secretary, and to possess over 2,000 members belonging to several supporting chapters. The association already had three "poetry research groups" (shige yanjiu tuanti), the poets of which supplied the bulk of the journal's poetry. Two of these groups, the "Oriental Culture Research Society" (Dongfang wenhua yanjiu xiehui) and the "Wholism Research Society" (Zhengtizhuyi yanjiu xiehui), were the journal's 'Appendix pp. # 352-353.  32 primary sponsors (ie., financial sponsors), and thirty of the journal's eighty pages were given over to the third group, the "Third Generation Alliance" (Disandairen tongmeng). Later in the 1980s when debate arose over a suitable name by which post-Misty poets might be known, some critics referred back to the usage of "third generation" here as the initial and definitive form. At the head of the section devoted to third generation poets in this journal, the term was defined as follows:  "Those who arose with the flag of the republic [in 1949] are the first generation [poets] The ten years [of the CR, 1966-1976] molded the second generation [Misty poets] The vast backdrop of the great age [post-Mao China] gave birth to us — The Third Generation." (p.31) In order to emphasize both the importance of the role of Misty poets in the wake of the CR and the differences between their poetry and that which now followed in its wake, the first eight pages of the journal were devoted to the work of five of these poets (including Bei Dao, Gu Cheng and Yang Lian) under the heading "An Ending or a Beginning" [Jieju huo kaishi]. A few young poets from outside Sichuan, such as Niu Bo and Haizi of Beijing, Guo Lijia from Liaoning province and Yu Jian from Yunnan province, also drew in on the strength of their poetry and their association with local poets. Finally, the last four pages of the journal were devoted to translations of four of Sylvia Plath's Aeriel poems, and an  33 introduction to her poetry and that of the American confessional school by Daozi. These translations, followed in 1987 by Daozi's book of translated poetry by Robert Lowell, Plath, Anne Sexton and John Berryman, were to have a great influence on third generation poets. Modernist's Federation and the poetry groupings which spawned it were an attempt by young poets in Sichuan to establish an open and orderly dialogue between each other within the province and, ultimately, between poets similar inclination throughout China. At that time, in 1984, their poetry was still unacceptable to the establishment and yet it was obvious to many that these were the poetic themes and forms which the majority of Sichuan's (not necessarily China's) young poets were devoted to. There was hope that the numbers and orderliness of these poets would impress the establishment, and that the community of Chinese poets would be expanded to include these younger, unorthodox poets in what appeared to be a new, more liberal age. This was not to be the case, however. Establishment intolerance resulted in the banning of the jom^nal and the various poetry groups in early 1985, not long after the journal's January publication. Liao Yiwu participated in all these activities, but remained as low-key as possible. While his new poetry was not acceptable to the literary establishment, he already had an established reputation'there, just as he now appeared to have among China's underground poets. Early in 1985, Liao  34 was given a post in Sichuan's literary establishment at the Fuling district culture bureau in Fuling, a mid-sized town at the confluence of the Wujiang and Yangzi rivers downriver from Chongqing in eastern Sichuan. Liao was assigned to work as the founding editor of a local literary journal to be published on a twice-yearly basis. In the four issues of The Literary Wind of Ba Country (eastern Sichuan) [Baguo Wenfeng] published before the journal was closed down in 1987, Liao published a number of underground poets who lived in the area. Chief among these was Li Yawei who came to be a close friend of Liao's at this time. Liao also arranged for translations of writings by Freud and Jung related to poetry and literature to be published during 1985. And in 1986, he arranged for the publication of a prose work by Sylvia Plath, an article about her Aeriel poems, and an article about Dylan Thomas and his poetry. By keeping a relatively low profile as an underground poet, Liao was able to work towards the furtherance of their cause within the establishment. Liao's arrival in Fuling marked a new, richer phase in his life as a poet and in general. He now had the confidence and strength of purpose which seemed lacking in his earlier work. To some extent this must have been related to the status he had so quickly achieved in both worlds of Chinese poetry, but was also related to his love for and marriage to Li Xia, a native of Fuling. In both The Literary Wind of Ba Country's number one issues of 1985 and 1986, Liao  35 published the first two installments of "Manuel's Music" [Manniuer de yinyue] which consisted of Liao's observations on art, life, the universe and love, written in a prose form which bordered on poetry. These writings offer a key to Liao's poetry up until 1989 when he completed a tenth installment (several were published in establishment and underground literary journals in other parts of China). Also in 1984, Liao began to write a series of highly successful prose poems which recorded his feelings toward life and fate which his relationship with Axia (pet name for Li Xia) seemed to bring Liao in closer proximity with.  "Deep Entry"fShenru] (from "Prose poems written for Axia" [Xiegei Axia de sanwenshi]) In this unending solitude, the tide of love swells sadly up to my ear and ebbs quietly only to several times retreat. To the sound of breaking waves, I drive ever deeper until I enter your innermost being. Like walking into a land within a land the tempest subsides, without sun or moonlight, I can only vaguely sense the cautious changing of the seasons on a hazardous bluff. Time passes: a century as quickly as a fox's tail — a flash at the entrance to time's tunnel and gone. My brief life is enveloped so by your breast, threaded through by your everlasting veins. I become part of your heart, pulsing always, sending this love to you, sending this love to a deeper, distant world'"* During May-June 1985, Liao completed the first of a series of poetic cycles and trilogies: "The Great Cycle" fDa xunhuan], a cycle of eight poems. "Deep Entry" ends where this *' Appendix pp. # 213, # 354.  36 poem picks up: an exploration of the life which lies beyond death at the core of all being, a subject Liao first touched upon in "Lovers" the year before. On the title page of "The Great Cycle" the poem is dedicated to the Wujiang river, "my place of rebirth." Liao further expressed this appreciation of his escape from the unnaturally ordered chaos of Chengdu by liberally infusing natural and cultural images of the land of Ba [Baguo], of which Fuling had been an ancient capital, throughout this cycle and much of the his later poetry. The title page was also graced by the final four lines of Dylan Thomas' sonnet, "When All My Five and Country Senses See": "My one and noble heart has witnesses In all love's countries, that will grope awake; And when blind sleep drops on the spying senses. The heart is sensual, though five eyes break."' It is with the heart that Liao will now observe the life of man, for as Thomas intimates (and as Liao also does in "Deep Entry"), it is the most acute sense of all: It will still love when the senses warn of the pain and torment that love (and life) must inevitably bring. In "The Great Cycle," Liao attempts to portray the cycle-like transition which is the life of individual man. The series of incantations and images which Liao presents, manifest a dramatically positive attitude toward death — the individual's inescapable fate. '' Appendix pp. # 355.  37 In the first poem of the cycle, "The Cycle Pillar" fXunhuan zhu], Liao introduces the sexual imagery and drive which powers these poems and are to play a major role in much of his later poetry:  The proud city has fallen low, shades of night move into place, the oceans of the unconscious surge mistily at its island top —that tall triumphal column standing at the center of the square damply signals a great achievement at the last with the epoch of empire building as a backdrop, launch the glorious seizure by force The blood of man bedecks revelry's totem, odes to the age are merely synchronous choral cries An ordinary human face is cast into a strange bronze, dividing equally with Death the autumnal scenery of the world of man Congregation of spirits 1 Unified entity of heaven and hell My tormented hallucinations are the only hope**  Great heaven-piercing devilish pillar, its base is the latent maternal body, the darkness before my birth  After this powerful beginning, "The Great Cycle" does not proceed to revolve around its potent center, but gradually falls off. If "The Cycle Pillar" presents the reader with an image of a rigid, forceful penis, then the final two poems of the cycle offer the concluding images and sensations of the sexual act:  " Appendix pp. # 356, ^ pp. # 357.  38 The water is underfoot, the flaring old lunatic licks your essence clean away Take pity on Death! "^° It is a wearying experience, as life must be when, as Liao puts it, "upper limbs are gods, [and] lower limbs are beasts." A series of wriggles, roars and assaults by a penis symbol are a continuous thread throughout Liao's poetry. Other content, including an even more basic strain —  death —  is often hung upon, an adjunct to, or inherent  to this one. Liao divides himself into two antithetical opposites, god and the devil, a pure essence and an equally pure bestiality, within his later poetry. Over the course of "The Great Cycle" where this tendency first appears, the poet attempts to sublimate and conquer pain, solitude and death as he strives to pass beyond individual, earthbound sensibility, toward the deeper, universal truths of life. The aims of "The Master Craftsman," a poem which Liao began to write immediately upon the conclusion of "The Great Cycle," are much the same. However, here the focus is no longer upon the individual, but on all of mankind as the poet sets out to write a developmental history of human existence. Liao attempts to raise the individual's internal contradictions to the level of the nation, of all mankind. Through the life experience of an individual, Liao tries to reveal higher sets of contradictions and the even higher balance between them, the tragedy of death and the xjy  Appendix pp. # 374.  39 subJimity of life, and the extremities of yearning and weariness, which are what he believes to be the basic qualities of life in its collective, universal form. The life of man, civilization and nature are of a similar pattern which reaches beyond the death of any one individual (or nation, or culture for that matter). To the surprise of many young poets and poetry critics in China, these experimental poems of Liao's were published in establishment journals. Almost immediately upon its completion in the summer of 1985, "The Great Cycle" was published in Lanzhou's Poetry Selections Monthly [Shige xuankan], and it was republished in 1986 in the pages of Plains [Caoyuan], a widely distributed literary monthly out of Huhehot, Inner Mongolia. Parts two and three of "The Master Craftsman" were also published in Poetry Selections Monthly during 1986. To many young poets this was a sign that a more liberal attitude toward literature was beginning to find currency in certain sectors of the cultural establishment, even though these publications were often located in remote corners of China. Part one of "The Master Craftsman" was published underground, however, in Chinese Contemporary Experimental Poetry which was produced in Fuling, Liao's hometown, in early Fall 1985. After the banning Modernist's Federation and Sichuan's underground poetry associations, Fuling and a new name for the journal were chosen in a successful attempt to escape the attentions of the authorities. Two local organs were found to  40 act as sponsors (the Fuling branch of the Sichuan Developers of Intelligence Association [Zhili kaifazhe xiehui] and the Fuling Correspondence Center of the Sichuan Correspondence University [Hanshou daxue hanshou zhongxin]). A new organization going by the name of the "Chinese Contemporary Experimental Poetry Research Room" (Zhongguo dangdai shiyan shige yanjiushi) was established by Sichuan's underground poets and took editorial responsibility for the journal. Liao was heavily involved but kept his name off of the editorial board. The structure of the journal was similar to Modernist's Federation and primarily the same poets participated in the venture. Bei Dao was the only Misty representative remaining, however, and two poets from Nanjing's Them, Han Dong and Xiao Jun, were added along with two from Shanghai. The inclusion of Yu Jian and Haizi allowed this journal the same national scope Modernist's Federation had had. Finally, once again Daozi graced the final six pages with a translation of Allen Ginsberg's "Howl," the first published translation of this poem. Once again, however, the journal was banned almost immediately by the authorities, the sponsoring organizations were censoTed and the research room was disbanded. Over the next few months Liao wrote two sequences of poetry, "White Horse" [Baima] and "Golden Jade" [Jin feicuij, which continued to explore the internal contradictory nature of man in the search for universal spiritual truth. In May 1986, "The Garden of Pleasure" [Le tu], written in late 1984,  41 appeared in the pages of the Chengdu underground journal, Han Poetry; A Chronicle of the 20th Century — ershi shiji biannianshi —  1986 [Hans hi:  1986]. The journal had been  180-pages long originally, but all copies of it were confiscated at the printing plant by the authorities. Only a few photo-copies of Han Poetry were in circulation before enough funding could be found to produce a slimed down, 120-page version in December 1986. With the exception of poems by Haizi and Daozi, all the poets of Han Poetry were Sichuanese. There were also thirty pages of theoretical essays in this journal, primarily written by the lead poets of "Wholism" (Zhengtizhuyi), a school of poetry founded during the summer of 1984. Han Poetry marked the end of the attempt to present a cross-section of Chinese underground poetry in one journal anywhere in China (in 1990, Beijing's Modern Han Poetry [Xiandai hanshi] became the first non-Sichuan journal to make the attempt). The summer of 1986 witnessed the final shattering of what in Sichuan's underground journals had appeared as peaceful coexistence among China's underground poets. It now seemed that the poets felt that the period of experimentation had come to an-end, and a myriad of would be schools of poetry and poetic "-isms" burst to the surface in the form of the "1986 Grand Exhibition of Poetry" orchestrated by Xu Jingya. Liao appeared in the "Exhibition," together with Ouyang Jianghe, a Chengdu underground poet, under the banner of "New Traditionalism." What appeared in the "Exhibition" at; a  42 manifesto was actually a preface which Liao had written for a collection of poems by nine third generation, Sichuan poets which the editors of China [Zhongguo] literary monthly^-^ had asked him to prepare early in 1986. Entitled "The New Tradition" [Xin de chuantong], this preface-^^ recorded many of Liao's basic attitudes toward tradition in poetry and the role of the poet in China's new age. Liao rejected outright what he saw as a tendency among former Misty poets, such as Yang Lian and Jiang He, and some third generation poets to return to the musty, discarded culture of past centuries in search of enlightenment just as poets of past eras had done: "The art of today is in essence a re-enactment of this sort of behavior. We [write] annotations on mythology, reach deductions based on The Book of Changes [Yijing] pursue the sense of history in contemporary poetry, do our utmost to exaggerate the effects of literature; in appearance concerned about our country and our people, in our bones all yearning to restore ancient ways. Those yearning to enter make general surveys of the realm of poetry and ten thousand voices converge into one; those who retreat take on the airs of immortals and finger valises in peach blossom gardens, using modernist methods to express a feudal consciousness of reminiscence is one of the obvious characteristics of current so-called 'national' poetry. Old values, old culture, old customs and old modes of feeling have settled as sediment in the national collective unconscious and have formed a contrary internal impulse which prevents us from entering into the century of science. The new tradition is not only based upon the destruction of old "^"^Including Liao's "Lovers," and works by Ouyang Jianghe, Zhai Yongming, Wan Xia, Li'Yawei, Zhou Lunyou, He Xiaozhu, Shi Guanghua and Gou Mingjun. Zhongguo [China], (Beijing: 1986 no. 10), pp. 35-51. ^^Ibid., p. 128.  43 forces^^', but is also rooted in the merciless judgement of oneself. "We deny all that the old tradition and the modern 'pig-tail brigade' impose on us, we oppose channeling artistic feeling toward any religion or system of ethics, we oppose the castration of poetry As a creator of art — the poet, no matter if it be present suffering, blaspheming against oneself, tearful howls and taunts when there are no other alternatives, or songs in praise of life, issuing challenges to death, affirming an adventurous spirit or the courageous questioning and dissection of the quality of one's own people, his life experience, his contradictionbound body should be a unique history of art, a special tradition [in his own right]. For at the same time that he exposes himself, he also reveals the perplexity and inevitable outcome which he holds in common with the age. "That spiritual body which has wantonly lorded it over creation for eons, sprays fresh life unceasingly onto the planet, it is more lasting than any epoch or long-standing tradition. Therefore, aside from yielding to one's innermost feelings and guiding mankind toward the dark sound which has fled into the depths of the universe, poets of new traditionalism do not yield to pressure from any external, non-artistic moral concepts, habits, directives or national inertia. "Ultimately there will come a day when we shall weary, but we can only throw ourselves forward within this, our own tradition.  "The New Tradition" was more than a preface to a disparate collection of poets who may or may not have shared Liao Yiwu's sentiments (which perhaps explains why China chose to publish it apart from the collection). Rather, it reads like Liao's personal observations on the current situation of Chinese poetry and a statement of personal intent and belief —  a manifesto, but a very personal one.  ^^ Bold print type-face is used by the author in the original text.  ^^Appendix p . # 3 7 5  .  44 This article points up the troublesome use of the term "tradition" as referred to earlier in the previous chapter. It would seem that the tradition which Liao is claiming as his own here is the spirit of Western modernism and avant garde art. In fact the "new" tradition is an attitude towards art which consists of a breaking away from established rules, traditions and conventions, fresh ways of looking at man's position and function in the universe and experiments in form and style. Liao appears to be unwittingly laying claim to the May Fourth Movement's attitude of totalistic iconoclasm. Yet just as with those writers, while borrowing heavily from Western sources, he also both consciously and unconsciously remains within Chinese tradition. Liao's later poems feature sometimes frequent reference and allusion to Chinese history and literature, even to the point of echoing the language and, to some degree, the form of classical poets. (An obvious example being the "Questioning Heaven" [Tian wen] poem within "The Master Craftsman".) "Yielding to one's innermost feelings ..." and so on, certainly can not be considered new attitudes and themes. Instead, Liao's imprecations are directed at the poetry engendered by the CCP and its literary establishment over the past 40-odd years. (A similar attitude is exhibited in some of the poetry of Li Yawei in Chapter III and Zhou Lunyou in Chapter IV. At points in their careers they too undertake what appear to be totalistic attacks upon "tradition," but in fact their  45 attacks make sense only with regard to China's post-1949 literary "tradition.") Thus Liao's declaration appears to be old news, but in the context of Chinese poetry in 1986, and bearing in mind that what Liao was writing was intended for publication in a major establishment literary journal, his words were both provocative and offered some insight into the attitudes of most underground poets with regard to the perceived "establishment" (a very self-conscious and defensive establishment in the case of China). In fact, "The New Tradition" was written shortly after Liao had completed another poem, "The City of Death" [Sicheng], to which the manifesto is very closely related. Liao's pledge of "the destruction of old forces" and "the merciless judgement of oneself" applies more accurately to "The City of Death" than to "Lovers" or any of the other poems published together with it in the pages of China. In "The City of Death," Liao turns against and does battle with himself, his earlier poetry and the search for roots within that poetry. He takes aim at the illusory ideals of poetry, of culture and of beauty, on the mindless behavior of anti-culture poetry and the crude, utilitarian linguistic creations which were prevalent among Chinese poets of the time. "The City of Death" refuses to accept traditional literary form and writing habits, it strives to shake of the ideological controls of cultural semantics, it uses the suggestive  46 powers of linguistic symbols to oppose the linguistic system of post-1949 social values, and uses the brutality and the magic of the imagination to disassemble and estrange the reality and concepts foisted onto language by cultural traditions. Liao attempts to wreak havoc at the unconscious psychological level of language and deflate the structure built upon the psychology of traditional culture, as evinced by its aesthetic value concepts and moral ideals. This is done by a series of interrelated phenomena which permeate the text: the fall of the cultural prophet Allahfaweh; acts of incest by the cultural archetype Nu Wa; the confusion of human, devilish and godly qualities; the atrophy of racial vitality; the spiritual damage done by historical holocausts (primarily the CR); the lack of temporal and spatial order in perceived existential circumstances; the violent conflict between the control of language and the imagination; and the latent contradictions between individual expression of free will and the norms of literary form. The poem has the surface appearance of a city of cultural death: strewn throughout are its crumbling ruins; the stink of historical decay fills the air; everywhere there is illusion, deception, suspicion, jealousy and vilification; its bones are permeated by the instinct to abuse others and to accept abuse from others, and in its blood flows the inherited elements of authority and slavishness. Liao fragments the logical structure of historical  47 existence by composing "The City of Death" from a series of shattered linguistic shards. Language and reality are thereby estranged and this creates a tension and disagreement between the use and meaning of language which then acts to free the imaginative powers of the writer and the reader. The unconscious of the individual and of the race to which he belongs are both intertwined and in opposition to each other within "The City of Death": for example, the imprecations of "I" directed at Allahfaweh, the degenerate archetypal father figure; the incestuous feelings of "I" for Nu Wa, the archetypal mother figure; and the unconscious entangled relationship between the three. This relationship is reflected within the language of the poem by way of the poet's resistance to and separation from traditional culture (Han Dong's "spirit of the classics" and Confucianism and Chinese traditional popular culture in general) and a similar relationship between the poet's diction and traditional linguistic literary form (both classical and post-1949 realism). Of vital importance to an accurate appreciation of "The City of Death" are the blood ties, or sexual relationships, between "I", Nu Wa and the imaginary cultural prophet, Allahfaweh. "Allahfaweh" [Alafawei] first appeared in Liao Yiwu's "The Great Cycle." There l?e was a totem symbolic of the primitive powers of nature inscribed upon "the cycle pillar" which in turn was symbolic of the intertwined nature of man.  48 beast and god. In "The City of Death," Allahfaweh remains a cultural icon and an imaginative symbol of primitive vitality. Allahfaweh makes his second appearance in part one of "The Master Craftsman" where he appears as the prophet of the evolutionary pattern of human existence. He is a shaman of the spiritual universe, a cultural prophet of great creative power, and is also an archetype of the collective unconscious who is also the guiding force in the poet's unconscious. However, in "The City of Death," Allahfaweh takes On the roles of father ("daddy of my imaginings") and a con-artist (a brothel customer). He drops out of the sky into the hellish world of man and unworthily occupies a place in it. Concentrated in his figure are a devilish nature, a source of lies and sexual abuse, sorcery, authority, and brutality. And "I", as his "indirect seed" in the dark city of death deep within the subconscious, participates in the entire process of his depravity. When "I" is born as a result of a magical reaction to his presence, "I" is already old and feeble because "I" is an apparition carrying the original sin of an entire race's culture upon itself. Therefore, "I" is unable to rid itself of the racial blood reJationship and can do nothing but write monologues of the soul about the decline and loss of Self as a form of atonement for its crimes. The life of the individual and that of culture further breaks down into two primary elements: sexual instinct and a certain fatalism. The former is seen within the poem in sexual role reversal, rampant sexuality, and sexual exhaustion.  49 and is closely associated with the internal mechanisms which led to the decline of culture and history, and the suicidal tendencies of the Self; the latter is manifest within the text by the predetermined nature of decline, the cycle of evil and the crisis of death, and is closely related to the inhibiting nature of traditional culture and self-restraint. The intertwined relationship between "I" and Allahfaweh, and the profane nature of the confrontation between the two, constitute the internal drive of the fated tragedy which is "The City of Death." When Allahfaweh acts as the symbol of culture's super-ego and brings his power to bear in an attempt to suppress "I," under the combined pressure of both he and culture, "I" is only abJe to put off this life and maintain the ability to carry out linguistic acts in this hallucination by way of magical incantations, mad ravings and somniloquy. Viewed in this way, this relationship takes on oedipal characteristics. Furthermore, the overlapping relationship between sex and culture, by way oi sexual role reversal and sexual atrophy, exhibits the impotent state of traditional culture's spiritual life. Finally, the description of the profane sexual relationship reveals the innate nature of the crisis which confronted culture at its very origins. Nu Wa appears as the object of sexual abuse in a scene which "I" is lured into by Allahfaweh:  "SiJently I count the innf; I've overnighted in during my life. From one to a hundred. Remote ancestors.  50 Progenitors. Great-grandfathers. Mothers. The made-up opera faces of each dynasty all flash through my mind. At the end I discover Allahfaweh, the prophet of Ba People Village, showing his green hand. Disguised as a customer groping his way into an underground brothel YOUR HAND SIGNALS AROUSE MY PASSION SURVIVING TREES OVERGROWN WITH VINES SEARCHING FOR LONG-DESIRED BRAMBLE THICKETS PIERCE CRACKS IN THE EARTH PIERCE DOOR LINTELS PIERCE BED SHEETS PIERCE FORESTS AND GRASSLANDS A CONCEALED UNIVERSE OF AMBER'S ELECTRICAL WAVES FLOW ON FOREVER STIR UP THE BLOOD CYCLE TWO MIGHTY BOWS SHOOT AT EACH OTHER TWO SEMI-CIRCLES BITE INTO EACH OTHER OUTSIDE TIGHTLY WRAPPED SUMMER UNUSUALLY HOT SPRAY HEAVENLY BODIES SPEED UP IN THEIR TURNING THE WHITE DOG SWALLOWS THE ELEPHANT THE ROOF TILES BREAK STARS INTO PIECES ALL MANKIND FALLS INTO HELL ALL HELL FALLS INTO HEAVEN SMASHING OUT GOD'S BRAINS WHO'S DANCING MODERN DANCES IN THE GREASED PAN ASS GYRATING LIKE ISADORA DUNCAN'S LOUD APPLAUSE YOU'RE DEITY YOU'RE DEMON YOU'RE A TANG-DYNASTY DIEHARD OR COFFEE SHOP WAITRESS ALL LIVING THINGS ARRANGED IN A ROW ABOVE THE EVERLASTING ABYSS UNCROSSED LEGS FORMING AN ENDLESS URINE-SOAKED CORRIDOR OF HISTORY WAITING FOR THE TERRIFYING PILLAR OF FLESH TO BE RAMMED STRAIGHT INI The soil has been tilled my girl your entire body drunkenly limp ovaries and seed in turmoil I say I love you I love you I love you until I suddenly recognize you as my mother until I lift away your ninth layer of skin and discover Nu Wa sobbing hiding within the eardrum-shattering thunder I seize the filthy genealogy and howl wildly I desperately thrash my lower torso like a swarm of bees the curse of eighty-eight generations of forefathers stings me. I shout: 'Allahfawehl You seducing thief!' The prophet falls back slipping into the inner room. Flashing a green hand"-^^ By way of hallucination and deception, the worship of the cultural archetype (or totem) of the mother becomes a scene of sexual brutality and confusion. Faith in culture becomes a kind of blind possession, an act of incest and of  "Appendix pp. # 226-227, # 387-388  51 blasphemy against oneself. Once the mythological archetype becomes the plaything of the will to power, so-called cultural holocausts (the CR) can be looked upon as outbursts of the repressed racial libido. Within "The City of Death," Liao sets about to destroy the myth of a mutually nurturing relationship between the universal female and male principles in traditional Chinese cosmology (yin yang), exposing the imbalance which in his mind has sealed the fate of Chinese culture. From this point of view, Liao's writing style and choice of subject can be seen as a self-defense mechanism, a battle within himself to prevent symbolic castration at the hands of a culture perceived to be impotent. In this battle, Liao brings the full force of his imagination to bear against his imagined adversary. With this in mind, Liao questions all commonly accepted Chinese social and linguistic conventions —  the old  ones and the new ones nurtured into being by the CCP: The language of the poet must be free of all taboos in order to explore and purge himself and the reality perceived by him. The conventions and taboos Liao seeks to shatter are primarily, however, of somewhat recent vintage: like other younger Chinese poets he has only a superficial knowledge of the classical poetry tradition and, in any case, the scraping of classical form and language for Western form and a more colloquial language had already been more-or-less completed in the 1920s and 1930s. Poetically, Liao writes in a surrealistic vein which often borders on absurdity and by  52 so doing counters the officially encouraged poetry of realism (once 'socialist-', then 'revolutionary-' and now progressive —  as in optimistic and tacitly, if not  actively, supportive of the post-1976 "new era" [xin shigi]). Ideologically, Liao's open sexuality and representations of psychic and physical chaos run counter to puritanical Confucian morality and the love of discipline and order in all things, traits which the CCP have always encouraged, if not required of Chinese society and its artists. Aside from sex, Liao also touches on sensitive political subjects: in "The City of Death", not only does the CR appear as a cultural holocaust, but all that came before and since are part of a far greater, 5,000 year-old cultural assault upon the human spirit. In the context of the poem, Mao and Deng appear as false gods who lead a willing people toward grandiose illusions of happiness and prosperity. The Chinese language of today has been redefined, even recreated, by the all-pervading lies and half-truths of the CCP. Both near the beginning and the end of "The City of Death" Liao refers to the agony of personal expression, and also to the type of verbal magic which cannot be expressed by normal language: " Unclear who is ghost and who is human, I want to cry out. A troop of frogs leaps up and scurries into my mouth "^* It  i  Sadly she plucks out a tongue the size of an egg-plant ^**Appendix pp. §^\^  , # ^%i  '.  53 She gazes fixedly by the light of the moon Carved on it are your sins And the history of a famous city The first section presents a predicament in which expression is blocked; its premise is the inability to fulfill the desire to cry. Due to a sense of alienation which comes about as a result of the inability to distinguish between men and ghosts, anything placed in these circumstances possesses a certain magical power, even frogs can prevent expression. These lines are a demonstration of the magic of the imagination. Semantic logic is collapsed by the imagination, and this applies a certain pressure to what follows and, in turn, the entire text. Worthy of note is the fact that these lines appear in the first section of "The City of Death" after the magical birth of "I" and against the backdrop of commonly held superstitions about ghosts and other supernatural beings. Therefore, these lines may be a commentary on expression: Only expression can bring about the magical movement of objects and events within the poem into concrete form of universal spiritual [fanlingj significance. The "she" in the second set of lines is not a spur of the moment imaginative creation. She may be an aged Nu Wa, a castrated "I," the poem itself as it approaches completion, or the poet. Here as the sky is about to brighten and the entire story of the city of death has been rendered into Tv-  Appendix pp. #"5.30  , # 391  54 words, the difficulties of expression are about to come to a close. The narration of "sins" and "the destruction of a famous city" can be "plucked" from any place in the text, just like her "tongue the size of an egg-plant." The difficulties of expression are now the unforetold fate of expression, everything is now irrevocable fact as reflected by the content of expression and the concrete reality of written language. Liao deliberately uses literary forms and a poetic diction which clash with traditional conventions, and will thereby estrange and alienate those who approach the text with traditional expectations of it (ie. sequential time line, realism, controlled emotions, selflessness, rationalism, etc.). In an age when China lacks a strong cultural axis, when there is also a massive incursion of outside culture and modern commercialism, the art of poetry is being pushed into a corner and becoming little more than a decoration or a piece of furniture. Under these circumstances, the poet is often led against his will to become a missionary or a sort of spiritual doctor. Beginning with "The City of Death," this was the role which Liao felt himself forced to play. For Liao, poetry had taken on the aspect of a religion in his life. For while "The City of Death" can been looked upon as an analysis of the contemporary Chinese spirit, in this poem the writing of poetry becomes a form of self-analysis through which the poet may attempt to purge his spirit of accumulated cultural dross.  65 Poetry appeared to be Liao's chosen path towards personal spiritual salvation in a struggle that continued to be played out in ever more uncompromising terms in his later poetry. This tendency was an offshoot of Liao's earlier poems such as "The High Plateau," The Hat," "Lovers" and "The Great Cycle," all of which explored the theme of a spiritual universe that formed the core of all life. Now Liao was working towards a closer communion with that spirit by attempting to destroy all the man-made cultural barriers (be they poetic, linguistic, ideological) that stood in the way. This poetry demanded not only a spirit of sacrifice, but a ruthless introspection of his own personal history and way of life —  his past life  as an establishment poet and functionary in particular, and the naivety of his pre-1984 poetry. Under these circumstances, blasphemy directed against all commonly accepted norms and traditions has often been a path toward purity chosen by artists, in addition to being a socially vital form of criticism. In this sense, Liao's poetry is also an indirect product of his personal ideological stance —  of his concept of a spiritual universe, a spirit of  anarchy, and deep-rooted pervasive scepticism. "The City of Death" and Liao's later poetry are a very personal commentary on, diagnosis of, and, at times, a prescription for the illnesses of the Chinese soul. But as the poet himself predicted in his preface to the poem, "Written before the gates of The City of Death" [Xiezai sicheng de menqian], his words would not be welcomed:  56 "...This [poetry] is obviously a far cry removed from rationaJ and lofty human nature. However an artist's sincerity is found in that he doesn't take pleasure from this world, and in that he willfully searches out the entire developing story of a people or even all of mankind. He jabs at its fatal weaknesses and at the cost of his life sounds a warning signal. He reveals the roots of the collective sickness which under the domination of primal, supranatural forces causes people to mutilate and kill each other and themselves. "Manifestations of anxiety, crisis, despair and rebellion ensure this City of Death won't receive a ready welcome, and Liao Yiwu's value lies precisely in this fact. Once a poet achieves universal public acclaim, his artistic life is done.^** His poem was welcomed by some, however, such as the Hunan author, Han Shaogong, who went so far as to refer to "The City of Death" as "China's 'Waste Land'" (there are allusions to and borrowing from this poem in "The City of Death") and who late in 1986 made use of his contacts in Beijing to arrange for the poem's publication in the pages of People's Literature, China's most influential literary monthly. '-^ In January 1987, "The City of Death" was published in People's Literature, ^'^ but without its preface, thus serving to render an already very complex poem more incomprehensible than it otherwise might have been. No doubt this was a result of direct references to the CR and the implication that the consequences of it were wreaking havoc still. Other direct references to the CR were removed from the ^" Appendix pp. i 3,IS'3H6, #J77-17S. ^/* Based on verbal accounts from Liao, Li Yawei and Xiao Kaiyu, all of whom were friends with Han and frequent visitors t his Can Xue's IJunan homes between 1985-1988. 1987, no. 1-2 combined edition), pp. 58-62.  57 poem itself. Liao began to suffer the consequences of the poem's publication in early february. The anti-bourgeois liberalization campaign which began in the realm of the arts after the forced resignation of CCP general-secretary, Hu Yaobang, focused on the contents of this journal and on Liao's poem and three other literary works in particular. Almost immediately, Liao was ordered to "cease work and undertake self-criticism" (tingzhi jiancha), and his small establishment literary journal. The Literary Wind of Ba Country, was permanently closed down by Sichuan's cultural authorities not long thereafter. Over the course of the next few months, a public campaign of criticism was waged against "The City of Death" in the cultural establishment media where a number of article's appeared attacking "The City of Death" for being overly obscure, depressing, obscene and generally not suited to the social needs of Deng Xiaoping's "new China" (similar articles began to appear again in 1990). Liao, however, took the situation in stride. He refused to cooperate in his "self criticism" and was essentially left to his own devices while still drawing his regular monthly paycheck at the Fuling District Cultural Bureau. In writing "The City of Death," Liao had already made a conscious decision to follow his own personal muse and to turn his back upon the establishment. Also, late in 1986, Liao had already agreed to undertake the task of editing an underground poetry journal —  a clear indication that he was  58 no longer as concerned about his status in the literary establishment as he had been earlier. Undaunted by his plight, in February 1987, Liao pressed ahead with the task of collecting what he considered to be the best of Sichuan's underground poetry during the preceding year for the underground journal, the name of which was to be The Modernist Poets of Sichuan [Bashu xiandai shiqun]. In a preface entitled "Return Home" [Chongfan jiayuan], Liao called out to China's underground poets and others to look into their souls for inspiration and to cease dreaming of entry into the literary establishment. He was critical of Xu Jingya's "Grand Exhibition" for appearing as a mere circus act which further encouraged young poets to abandon artistic principles in a mad rush toward the limelight, status, acceptance by the establishment and fortune. Their false hopes and expectations were predictably smashed, however, when the "everlasting hand" of authority closed the door to poetic orthodoxy upon them (a reference to the events which began to unfold within the literary establishment in February):  You must each return to your home. There is a sound beneath your skin which says this. Since art will not bring you any real benefits, you can only return to your home. No matter whether you abandon poetry, continue to sink down or float up, you must break away from solitude and engrave yourself more deeply into the true circumstances of mankind. Although the birth of figures of permanent stature is often at the price of the silent sacrifice of one or several generations, those who understand and undertake the  59 salvation of their own souls, even if they haven't written one line of poetry, are also qualified to console themselves with the title of poet "^-^ In early May, The Modernist Poets of Sichuan was ready for the printers. However, the authorities were tipped of, and late in the night after the 1,500-copy print-run was completed, the police descended upon the small Fuling printing house and confiscated all copies of the journal. The next day Liao was questioned, but not arrested. In addition, he refused to hand over the journal's printing templates (claiming that he did not have them) and, with the help of a friend elsewhere in Sichuan, was later able to use them to photo-copy a limited number of copies. Within this journal Liao published the preface to "The City of Death" which People's Literature had not had the nerve to publish and the second poem of what Liao entitled the "The Allahfaweh Trilogy" [Alafawei sanbuqu], of which "The City of Death" had been the first poem. Liao had completed this second poem, "Yellow City" [Huangcheng] during the latter half of 1986 and followed that in early 1987 with "The City of Illusions" [Huancheng]. "The City of Death" had recorded the perilous journey of the individual's unconscious through the ruins of Chinese culture; standing upon these ruins is "Yellow City" (Yellow is not just a reference to skin color and earth, but also implies authority and "^^Appendix pp. # 392. (Bold type face used in original text.)  60 orthodoxy) which is an empty, false cultural edifice. Following the destruction of these two cities, the entire accumulation of culture down through the centuries becomes a vacant, unreal "City of Illusions." Taken together the three poems constitute an elegy about the life of the individual in China, and at the same time an allegory about the crisis of culture and of life in China today. The trilogy is not, however, simply anti-culture for the sake of culture; rather Liao takes great pains to illustrate the complicated relationship between the poet and culture. When this relationship is examined within the context of life itself, it becomes possible to overcome and surpass that relationship. All three poems are concerned with death. The gloomier, self-reflexive "City of Death" and authority's "Yellow City" both expose a form of death: the passive death of an entire race. "The City of Illusions" pushes the theme of death to the limit: the spirit, illusions, all possible paths out and the future are all smashed by a series of prophecies within this city of fantasy. Allahfaweh says: "I will disguise my name and live in solitude Blpck off access to you all Until the loss of language, I will partake of the offerings to the gods"^^ The trilogy becomes a tragedy enlarged to encompass all of mankind. In "Yellow City," Allahfaweh says "You are merely doomed insects!" trying to crawl away. ^^ Appendix pp. # 399.  61 " WHAT KIND OF STRANGE BEAST IS HISTORY PEOPLE ARE ONLY BODIES AND TAILS UNABLE TO ESCAPE BEING CONTROLLED BY HEADS THE IRRESISTIBLE MOUNTAIN TORRENT STIRS THAT ONE AND ONLY NAME YELLOW EMPEROR YELLOW EMPEROR THE CHAINS WHICH BIND OUR WINGS ARE LINKED THROUGH TIME IMMEMORIAL SYMBOL OF THE CONTINENTAL DRAGON YELLOW EMPEROR YELLOW EMPEROR MUMMY I WANT TO GO OUT"^"* Crawl, but where can one crawl to? In "Manuel's Music no. 9: Godliness and Elegies" fManniuer de yinyue zhi jiu: shenxing yu wange], Liao says of himself that he "was born onto this earth in order to sing dirges."^* His tears are primarily intended for himself and the death of Allahfaweh, however, and only secondarily for his race and all of mankind. On the strength of the friendship and admiration of Zong Renfa, the young assistant-editor-in-chief of Author [Zuojia], a literary monthly out of Liaoning province in the northeast of China, "Yellow City" was eventually published in that journal's February 1989 issue. None of Liao's subsequent poetry, including "The City of Illusions," has been published in the establishment print media. After the completion of "The Allahfaweh Trilogy," Liao set about rewriting "The Master Craftsman" during the latter half of 1987. Initially a three part poem written in 1985, Liao now expanded it to five parts, incorporating the subject matter of the three cities of death into its text. Whereas "The Allahfaweh Trilogy" was primarily centered upon Liao's own internal contradictions and inner turmoil. The narration of the historical development of humanity in "The ^"^Appendix pp. # 406-407. ^^pp. # 412.  62 Master Craftsman" is made from a more impersonal, comprehensive point of view. Liao was still in a state of limbo with regard to his post at the culture bureau and was thus able to turn his full attention to poetry. In early 1988, he set off on an extended trip to various parts of China with Li Yawei and Xiao Kaiyu. Liao returned to Fuling in April 1988 with an even more pessimistic perception of what he considered the two major pressures of the times on the individual and poetry: spiritual exhaustion and rampant consumerism. His immediate response was the poem "Bastards" [Zazhong], the first of three poems that would make up what Liao was later to call "The Slaughter Trilogy" fTusha sanbuguj. Liao now began to tear into poets, poetry (likening the writing of poetry to defecating) and language itself, employing all manner of post-modernist literary devices in his work. APHORISM Where did the name bastard come from? Did it fall from the sky? It didn't. Is it inherent in man's brain? It isn't. The name bastard can only be derived from social practice, from the practice of class struggle (world war), the production struggle (land reform) and scientific practice (genetic engineering).  To tear out a page from a book is the same as killing a person.  You are not a genius, you are not an ordinary person, you are the kind of person between genius and ordinary.  63  Tired  Bored  Go on living.  What are you? What am I? What is Ginsberg? What is Dante? What is Li Bai? What is Confucius, Zhuangzi, Mencius, Laozi? What is Star Wars? "^^ "Aphorism" [Geyan], the ninth and final part of "Bastards," opens with a rewritten passage from Mao's little red book [Mao Zedong yuluben].^*^ Mao had originally asked from where correct thinking was derived. Liao proceeds to turn this on its head in an expression of personal, mental and spiritual limitation and exhaustion, and an all-embracing scepticism which ultimately calls into question the assignation of meaning and significance to language itself. In "Idols" [OuxJang], completed in August 1988 and the second poem of the trilogy, Liao continues his outright assault upon culture, here turning his attention to the idols and icons of poetry and all forms of mythology. The cultural significance of poetry and poets is dispatched in the opening and concluding poems of "Idols" ("The Giant Mirror" [Jujing] I & II). Sandwiched between them are a series ^^Appendix pp. # 434-435. ^^pp. # 434. (Liao's note in text.) 2 V pp. # 445.  64 of four poems equating Mao Zedong with the poet-creator, detailing their wanton acts of creation and destruction.  "People are monkeys with ideas, before understanding cause and effect, we must wait for the rotting bodies to pile up into a mountain, business at Death's restaurant is always good '•^' ".....Remember, sons — the father who eats himself to death always says this. The devil knows what he wants his ancestors to remember REMEMBER — and so we invented language, it is the symbol which waits in our stead. It increases, decreases, decreases, increases, from beginning to end neither too many nor too few. II 2  8  And, of course, language is the greatest icon of them all. After the completion of this poem, for almost eight months Liao's pen was silent. As the earlier poems and statements make abundantly clear, he had consciously chosen marginalization for himself and his poetry in 1986. The first two poems of "The Slaughter Trilogy" had been little more than elaborations of themes he had first introduced to his poetry in "The Allahfaweh Trilogy." His poetry had lost the serious and, at times, insightful, and thus constructive, tones of the earlier trilogy and "The Master Craftsman"; and he was no longer holding to the strictures he had laid down for himself and others in "The New Tradition" and "Return Home." Instead, "Bastards" and "Idols" appeared as light comedies of rebellion, bordering at times on mere rebellion for rebellion's ^"Appendix pp. # 445-446.  65 sake, and denunciation for denunciation's sake. In "Slaughter" [Tusha], which Liao began to write in May 1989, he is singing dirges once more. During the first two parts of the poem, he cries as much for himself as for others over his personal inability to leap with his imagination and creative ability beyond the travails of Chinese social and spiritual circumstances: "Cry! Cry! Cry! Cry! Cry! The only person this century to squander his tears The only person this century to soar beyond mankind obstruct the tide of history The only person this century with the courage to Crycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycry! The only person this century to profane against his own mother, hate his own bJood, curse his own species, mutilate his own friends, shit, soul. Man of the fields. Crycrycry! Shattered myth, a wild beast that should be sliced into a million pieces, in the end your own tears will drown you! " All you can do is remin.i see and think, and in reminiscing and thinking waste away You havt* no choice but to live as a parasite in a people, a home, a fatherland, a mother, a work place, a way of thinking, a train ticket and one fate No room for choice, like a novel of realism Time, place, characters, motives, desires and every sentence, all meticulously plotted Don't dream — ! Don't dream — ! Don't dream — ! These damned nights, even my insomnia in planned by a director"^^ Fatalism, self-doubt and despair lead Licio to question his own motives and significance as a poet:  •Are you Xiang Yu? Are you Qu Yuan? Are you a hero who after a thousand cand one twir.ts and turns Tr?rAppendix  pp. # 'HI-'W.j .  66 descends upon the world of mnn? Too bad nobody knows you. The fasting, petitioning students don't know you. The capital undar martial law and the soldiers don't know you. The woman who spent last night with you doesn' know you. The door of the home you just stepped out of moves far away to avoid you — you don't even know you II 3 O  This is again reminiscent of the tormented, utterly alienated character of "I" in "The Allahfaweh Trilogy." The second part of this poem concludes with "I" (in this poem "the real you" [zhenzheng de ni]) observing the results of China's cultural catastrophe:  The real you is refused entrance to a hotol because of your accent, stares eagerly at 'Tailang,' 'Ganqcun,' 'Songjing'^^ embracing your sisters as they climb the steps and enter the' room, loosen clothes and undo belts, cherry blossoms and ancient rhythms induce dreams, your sisters call out softly 'Thank you for your attentions' after being seduced and raped by foreign currency, jewelry, furniture ^nd top quality woolen fabrics Now three hundred thousand bitter sopls in the war of resistance against Japan museum shout in alarm the devils have entered the city, in our hallucination three hundred thousand bars revolve, run wild, shatter, like horse hooves sweeping past amidst gunsmoke"^^ In "The Allahfaweh Trilogy" and elsewhere, Liao had made the point that one's race was one's fate. "The real you" is to be found there and must share in China's depravity and degradation. This is the ultimate cause of Liao's tears and -*°Appendix pp. | ^^^3 . ^^Japanese surnames. ^^Appendix pp. * <-/-70  67 dirges and, on June 4, 1989, more horrilic evidence of the nation's plight further confirmed Liao's beliefs: and led to a very different conclusion to "Slaughter" than hiad been originally intended. Now instead of the slaughter of souls, living and dead, the slaughter of human life and blood lust is graphically dramatized. As symptoms of the general malaise, there is, as always, a solution, but for a people who have already lost their souls: "We stand in brilliance but all people are blind We stand on We stand in mute We stand in refuse  a great road but no-one is able to walk the midst of a cacophony but all are the midst of heat and thirst but all to drink  People with no understanding of the times, people in the midst of calamity, people who plot to shoot down the sun You can only cry, you're still crying, you cry crycrycrycrycrycry! CRYCRY! CRY!'-^^ "In this historically unprecedented slaughter only the spawn of dogs can survive "-'^ Of course, this was not an "unprecedented slaughter", for greater atrocities had occurred during the CR (not to mention the results of civil wars and rebellions throughout Chinese history). However, it was unprecedented in terms of Beijing and with regard to student protest movements there this century. From this point of view, Liao's dramatic exaggeration may appear justified. In China, Liao would be ^^Appendix pp. # 0.33  , * H-'?H'  68 classified as an "intellectual" [zhishi fenzi], and the students murdered in Beijing and elsewhere represented the naive hopes for freedom of most Chinese intellectuals, if not the rest of the populace. But it was the students who had acted on those hopes, other intellectuals had been largely immobilized by fear and anguish. Now, as the bastard spawn of a dog, Liao went the next step in his rebellion against his fate, a fa-fce which in Beijing had taken on a more concrete form than ever before in Liao's experience, and declared himself a dissident poet. Other Chinese poets may have written poems to commemorate the Tian'anmen Massacre after the fact, or after they had already fled the country, but Liao wrote his on June 4--5 while the massacre was still being perpetrated. If other poets still resident in China wrote similar poems, they have been locked away in desk drawers or have been «festroyed by the poets themselves. By making the decision to circulate copies of his poem and a voice recording of his reading of it, Liao became the first Chinese poet to consciously attempt to use his poetry as a weapon against the CCP regime. By not putting his name to the manuscript or voice-tape, Liao was able to avoid arrest even though the authorities discovered a copy of the voice-tape in Shanghai and had questioned him and placed him under surveillance .in October 1989.  69 In early 1990, Liao together with five fri<2nds~'^ set about producing a videotape based on "Slaughter" which was to take the name of "Song of the Quiet Souls" [Anling qu]. Apparently, the six of them believed that Liao was no longer under surveillance, for they made little effort to conceal their actions in Shapingba, the suburb of Chongqing where they decided to produce the video. Finally, on March 25, 1990, on the very day the video was completed and ready to be distributed, the authorities moved in and arrested all six. Axia was also arrested initially because she had copied out in her better handwriting the manuscript of "Slaughter" for Liao. She was released after a period of one month. The other five participants were held for two years without trial before being released in February 1992. I-iao Yiwu was eventually given a secret trial in the spring of 1992, and sentenced retroactively to four years in prison. Currently, Liao Yiwu is confined in a labour camp near Chongqing. He is in good heaJth, is well treated, and, according to recent reports, has been allowed to resume writing poetry.  Liao Yiwu is in some respects a casualty of his era. The power of his imagination and diction, and an unusual sensitivity allowed his star to rise early and fast in the early 1980s. These qualities are the same ones which drew him to the poetry of Dylan Thomas with whom, on the surface, -'^These five included Ba Tie (a poetry critic from Puling), Liu Taiheng (a Chongqing poet), the poet Li Yawei, Wan Xia (a Chengdu poet), and Gou Mingjun (a poet from Nanchuan).  70 he appeared to share much in common: "Poetry is the rhythmic movement from an over-clothed blindness to a naked vision. My poetry is the record of my individual struggle from darkness towards some measure of light. My poetry is, or should be, useful to others for its individual recording of that same struggle with which they are necessarily acquainted.... Poetry, recording the stripping of the individual darkness, must, inevitably, cast light upon what has been hidden for too long, and, by so doing, make clean the naked exposure.... It must drag further into the clean nakedness of light more even of the hidden causes than Freud could realize."-''* These words of Thomas' could just as easily be those of Liao Yiwu prior to the writing of "The Allahfaweh Trilogy." In 1986, Liao chose not merely to uncover what lay hidden within himself, but to also turn his poetry into a battle ground between himself and the forces of evil which he identified as being the ultimate cause of his own personal and his entire nation's suffering. Thomas believed that self-knowledge could bring a peace of mind which resulted from a sound psychological readjustment, mental health and a fuller and more valid mode of living. Liao, on the other hand, was reacting to a much more turbulent, perilous environment than Thomas had ever experienced and by his very nature was fated to react to it just as violently as Thomas often did to his. The criticisms of Liao also bear much in common with those of Thomas. Some have deprecated his obscurity. Others ^^Henry Treece, Dylan Thomas: Dog Among Fairies, (Now York: John de Graff Inc., 1956), p. 30.  71 have cavilled at his slipshod use of words, at the monotony of some of his rhythmic patterns, and at the limitations of his theme. In answer to the first objection it must be granted that Liao is obscure, and must remain obscure to all whose emotional experiences are dissimilar from his, though principally so to those who will make no effort to recognize the voices of the body, and to those who demand, from everything they may encounter in life and art, a mathematical equation, or a prose equivalent. With regard to the other objections, the poet is primarily concerned with Man, through birth, copulation, to death, as has already been stated. Life is a Limited process, after all, and only human conceit could make it other than it is; so, if the successions of glandular and other physical images seem tiring and unreal, then the sooner those critics turn to the poetry of others, the better. Whatever sort of poetry Liao is writing now, it seems unlikely that his talent will ever throw off these qualities completely. Life in any poem of Liao's does not move concentrically round one central image; the life must come out of the center; an image is born and diea in another; and any sequence of images is a sequence of creations, recreations, destructions, and contradictions. But in Liao's later poetry he is unable to make a momentary peace with his images at the correct moment: the warring stream drags on until  72 extreme exhaustion or death overtake the poet and his poem. Perhaps Liao will emerge from his four years in prison a wiser judge of his own abilities and limitations. But this will require some modicum of readjustment to and accoiranodation with the art of poetry, if not with his social environment and culture in general. Liao is a sinqular, unique figure among Chinese poets and one who has played an active role in the development of China's underground poetry and third generation poetry in general. At the still young age of 36 (when he will be released from prison in 1994), there is no reason not to expect more and better poetry from his pen.  73  Chapter 3) LI YAWEI: THE HARD MAN OF SICHUAN  Since his release from a Chongqing prison in February 1992, Li Yawei has turned away from poetry and has applied his literary talents to the writing of pulp fiction about the imaginary knights errant and daring bandit-heroes he once wrote poetry about. A return to his days as one of China's few itinerant poets appears to have been finally precluded by marriage in the summer of 1993. Li's apparent reaction to his post-June 4 incarceration (he was arrested on March 25, 1990) is in stark contrast with his rambunctious rise as a poet of some acclaim in China's second, underground world of poetry. Born on March 17, 1963 in the mountains of eastern Sichuan province, Li Yawei began his career as a poet in 1981 during his first year as a student at a teacher's college in Chongqing. Prior to 1984, Li was introduced to the serious themes and social concern of Western modernist poetry and its pale Chinese reflection in Misty poetry, in addition to those of ancient China and the CCP-era. Like many other young poets of the time, he looked to Misty poetry for early guidance in his craft. By the end of 1983, however, like many others, Li reacted against the homogenization. of the Misty poetry style as it entered into establishment orthodoxy minus the penetrating  74 scepticism and all-pervading sense of alienation of its early period. At the same time, in Sichuan at least, "poetry in search of roots" (xungen shi) was gaining popularity among a number of prominent younger poets. This "roots" poetry appeared to many as a conscious attempt to recapture and explore a poetic spirit and tradition which was already long lost. In Li's eyes, roots poets were trying to pass off as relevant, false gentility and lifeless imagery passively derived from China's ancient traditional culture, seeking sources as they did in ancient mythology and The Book of Changes. Li was not ill-disposed towards classical Chinese poetry, for he was drawn to many of its themes (drinking, women and parting, among others, were to figure prominently in his later poetry). Instead of the re-gentrification of poetry, however, he felt it necessary to write poetry in a language and in a style that he and others of his age could identify with. Li also reacted against the Western modernist tradition as it was taught in China's schools.^ In short, Li was infused with the rebellious spirit which had gained currency on China's college campuses. However, his poetic rebellions were focused on the realist-utilitarian tendencies of establishment poetry and certain trends among younger poets. The classical tradition was still a legitimate source of inspiration for one who ^Li Yawei, "Manghan shouduan" [Macho man methods], Guandonq wenxue yuekan [Guandong literature monthly], '(Liaoyuan: June 1987), pp. 39-42. Appendix pp. #^77-'f^S,.  75 fe]t close to some aspects of it. Furthermore, as previously mentioned, there was no call to rebel against a poetic and linguistic tradition which was already far removed from present day reality. His spirit of rebellion was directed against the literary phenomena of his experience and was probably further heightened at the time by the CCP political campaign to stamp out "spiritual pollution" (so-called "bourgeois-liberal" thought and behavior) in China's schools and literature during the fall and winter of 1983-1984. It also appears that Li got his first look at translations of the poetry of Allan Ginsberg, Sylvia Plath and other more recent Western poetry during this time. In the emotional explosiveness, unashamed self-preoccupation and metrical expansiveness of Ginsberg, Li and other young poets discovered possibilities for the creative freedom they craved. Here was a poetic form perfectly suited to their "screw you" attitude towards all forms of authority and the hypocritical morals, values and conventions current in Chinese society. Like Ginsberg, Li also aspired to write poetry which invited a complete emotional and physical participation by the audience. This early poetry sought to release into poetry a happy-go-lucky type of vitality which Li himself felt and which he believed common to all people not yet smothered by abstraction, orthodoxy, regulation, and the antisepticly cerebral.. A further inspiration for Li was the poetry of Carl Sandburg who also had sought to liberate verse from  76 gentility and to speak and sing like ordinary people in his poetry. Into his poetry, Li incorporated colloquial speech, slang and even, on occasion, CCP terminology. "I am China" [Wo shi zhongguo] is one of Li's earliest poems of this phase and incorporates the expansive "I" of Walt Whitman in describing a China which in many ways appears to be the antithesis of Whitman's America: I AM CHINA But I'm probably a woman My history is a few lovely years of wandering I live, to forget my Belly has just given birth to several sons. Actually, I am a bad poet turned back by fate I am the father of science, the son and a lab technician with a monthly salary of forty-five yuan I am the son-in-law of a big-footed peasant woman I am the fatherland's present, past and future I am the yellow emperor, a corpse, but primarily a living person •• • •  I am a map of China1 I am China] I am a policeman's club stuck on this clump of earth a hoe, a pair of big feet or a calculating instrument There are lots of me's in this earth female me's half me's All are me and other me's I am China."^ As in the poetry of Liao Yiwu, the spirit of China is a passive, inert thing typified by the female principle (yin), sexually repressed to the point of castration. The poem's humour and tone of self-mockery are recurrent elements in Li's poetry of this period.  "Appendix pp. #ta3-^.  77 During the month-long January-February 1984 Spring Festival school holiday, Li Yawei made the acquaintance of a number of like-minded student-poets (Wan Xia, Yang Li and Er Mao chief among them) in Chengdu and Chongqing-'. Girlfriends, alcohol, fighting and wandering were common themes of the poetry of this group which was later to take the name "Macho Man" (Manghan) for their style of poetry. "The Chinese Department" [Zhongwen xi] is a poem which expresses the antagonistic, sceptical spirit of students on Chinese college campuses, but primarily alludes to Li's gang of restless chums: superfluous men in a college setting. Unhappy with the restrictions placed upon them, protest and rebellion is expressed through narcissistic and nihilistic activity. This portrayal finds some inspiration in Ginsberg's allusions to the Beats in "Howl," although Li is specific within his poem about the individuals involved and their experiences are much less extreme than those of the Beats. Written in the summer of 1984 upon the graduation of most of the Macho Men from college (expulsion in a few cases), "Hard Men" [Yinghanmen] was in some respects the manifesto of this group of poets. Now, no longer trapped within campus walls, they sought direct and complete engagement with the world as "porcupines with poems dangling from our waists/ ^Wan Xia, "Preface", Mang Han [Macho Man], (Underground poetry journal, Chengdu: December 1984), p. 1. Appendix p. #'f^^  78 we're dubious characters/submerged drifting masts".^ These poets sought to embody the male principle (yang) absent from the spirit of China's culture. Shamelessness and fearlessness were to be their trademark. The self (or selves) in Li's poem is both the creator of conflict and on the receiving end of it. Also, here again the prevailing tone is one of self-mockery. In contrast to the heroic stance of the self in Misty poetry, the self is crushed, collapsed, a situation revealed by the contrast between the insignificant, powerless individual and the monstrous, overpowering nature of the world which he is now entering into. Action and movement are the keys to existence in such a world. The hard men embody an anti-heroic consciousness as they refuse all the modes of existence dictated by a repressive society and dead traditions. China lies passive before them: "Go, and along with the roads ohoke the whole mountain along with the trackers for the boats pull the Yangzi straight with the Yangzi force the sea back Set out and see our vast world see the waste land history has left to us Let's go my hard men"^ "I am China" and "Hard Men" were the first two poems in the first edition of Macho Man, the journal, published clandestinoly in Chengdu, December 1984. By this time, the  ^Appendix pp. # 3.3« / TH^ "pp. #2.+ ! , # ^^( .  :  79 Macho Men were scattered throughout the province, isolated from one another by the bureaucratic, authoritative nature of a society in which employment is assigned to students upon graduation from college. "The Cornered Beast" [Kunshou] and "The Blind Tiger" [Manghu], two poems written by Li during 1985, capture a new, humorless sense of isolated, uncomprehending powerlessness which descended upon Li during his first year as a high school music teacher in a remote mountainous corner of eastern Sichuan. It was no coincidence that "The Cornered Beast" was written during school summer vacation in 1985: "In flight he feels free."^ Aside from ridiculing himself and his attempts to ward off unreasonable manipulation by society, poetry was also an important form of self-affirmation for Li when not together with his fellow Macho Men. But Li was also well aware of the dangers which lay in store for him and others of his kind in China: "His fur brushes against brambles and past, behind there is a roar of rifles being cocked"'' "The Cornered Beast" is an expression of Li's belief that a person has no roots, that there is no true spiritual home, only life and movement within its never-ending stream. Ultimately death is the final and only repose. In keeping with this theme, after graduation in 1984, Li Yawei began to introduce new subjects into his poetry which '•Appendix pp. # 242, # 492. 'pp. # 245, # 493.  80 offered imaginative escape and freedom from China's social reality, while at the same time still commenting obliquely and humorously upon it. Now his most, common themes were of knights errant, daring bandits and famous classical Chinese poets, in addition to those of wandering, sex and alcohol, all but sex being traditional themes inspired by popular romance novels or classical poetry. The knights, bandits and poets offered Li some modicum of comfort and companionship now that he was isolated from his old Macho Man friends for much of the year. Li would wander into ancient China and from there in satirical visions comment caustically on the present day:  "This group of horse-riding Intellectuals wandering about in antiquity Occasionally carry their pens in supplication to the emperor and frolic before him Raise intricately rhymed opinions Sometimes accepted, the land is at peace Most of the time they become the esteemed forerunners of rightists "Su Dongpo and his Friends" [Su Dongpo he ta de pengyoumen]^ Li's criticism is intended as a negation of various aspects of tradition, not of culture per se. He is attracted to poets, such as Tao Yuanming and Li Bai: "Old Tao, for a long time now braised fish hasn't been a dish to eat while drinking strong liquor Now even those who love us only drink beer My verse stops at the riverside and is weeping after antiquity"** "Appendix pp. # 494. ^pp. # 246, # 498-499.  81 In this poem, "An Ancient Friend" fGudai pengyou], Li harks back to an age when poetry and poets were of greater value than they are today. Li grieves over the commercialized, depersonalized nature and forms of contemporary literature (and life):  "Are you dead, Tao Yuanming Afterwards your poetry was cloth-bound by a commercial print house Your poems are dissected by old men in universities""^" As a poet whose work, at the time, was circulated exclusively in underground publications and was finding a broad, enthusiastic audience, Li was confident that he would not suffer a similar fate:  "But my poetry will push all this aside Entitled as a district magistrate, my verse is commanding armies to march south"^^ Li's lament over commercialism and the crude sensibilities of modern Chinese, takes a cue of sorts from Ginsberg's "A Supermarket in California" and Ginsberg's despair over Whitman's "lost America of love":  "Tao Yuanming oh Tao Yuanming I have no money tonight This evening my lines are searching for the fisherman by the river"^^ Li harks after the untroubled, idyllic visions of man in ^"Appendix pp. # 246, # 498. ^-'Ibid. -'^Ibid.  82 harmony with the universe as portrayed in Tao's pastoral verse. The fisherman is the one that Tao writes of as having travelled to the "Peach Blossom Spring" [Taohua yuan jil who after once having found it and left, is never able to return: only rumor of and longing after that place remains for those without. Li, like Tao before him, is left on the banks of the stream of life (a recurrent image in Li's poetry) looking towards its far-off source. In the end, for Li, all that is left are melancholy tears in recognition of the great distance that lies between he and that spring, and his soul-mate, Tao. After over sixty years of exorcism by the CCP and their predecessors, China's traditional culture can only reappear in the disembodied, absurd forms which it does in Li's verse. But while the forms may be different, the message, on occasion, may be the same. As previously mentioned, the Macho Man poets had essentially disbanded as a group by December 1984. During 1985, together with Er Mao who also worked in the same remote area where Li had been posted, Li put together two further underground collections of Macho Man poetry, in addition to a personal collection which also used the Macho Man name. In that same year, Liao Yiwu, editor of Fuling's Literary Wind of Ba Country, published Li's "Endless Road" [Qiongtu] in his journal's inaugural issue. This was the first publication of Li's poetry in an establishment journal.  83 In January 1986, Liao's journal also published "The Cornered Beast" and "The Blind Tiger." April of that year saw "Hard Men" published in Guandong Literature [Guandong wenxue], a regional monthly published out of Liaoyuan in the north-eastern province of Jilin.^^ And, in October 1986, "The Cornered Beast" was again published in the nationally circulated Beijing literary monthly, China. Furthermore, also in the fall of 1986, Li Yawei and other Macho Man poets were featured in Xu Jingya's "Grand Exhibition." By that time. Macho Man had already ceased to exist as a coherent group much less an "-ism." However, Li agreed to write a short manifesto entitled "The Macho Man-ism Declaration" [Manghanzhuyi xuanyan] and a number of Macho Man poems written in 1984, including Li's "The Chinese Department," were published together with it as representative works. The establishment publication of Li's work and of that of other Macho Man poets and other third generation poets who wrote colloquial language poetry during 1986, was a clear indication to Li that, to some extent. Macho Man had already become acceptable to the poetry establishment. He recognized that Macho Man was not a school of poetry (although some north-eastern practitioners of Macho Man claimed that it was) or even a loose grouping of poets (as it still appeared to be within "The Grand Exhibition"). In December 1986, Li wrote "Macho Man Methods" [Manghan "^^In 1987, "Hard Men" was awarded the top prize for poetry published in Guandong Literature during 1986.  84 shouduan], a retrospective review of Macho Man poets and poetry initially published in The Modernist Poets of Sichuan, the underground journal published by Liao Yiwu in the spring of 1987, and once more later on that year in Guandonq Literature. Li stated that far from being any sort of "-ism," Macho Man was in fact no more than an attitude towards life, it was poetry written purely as self-affirmation and self-valuation. Of more lasting value, according to Li, was a "language which destroys language" (the language destroyed being that of post-1949 lyricism) and the introduction into Chinese poetry of a youthful language of action, brute force and alarming, even if superficial, frankness. It was in recognition of this last statement that Li was invited to submit poetry to another Sichuan underground poetry journal. Not-Not, published by Zhou Lunyou in Xichang in the west of the province, in the spring of 1986 and once again in 1987. Yang Li, one oi the original Macho Men, was actually on Not-Not's editorial committee. Not-Not specialized in publishing poetry which assaulted the linguistic and value systems current in China. Li Yawei's poetry had also appeared in three other widely circulated Sichuan underground journals during 1985-1986. Aside from Guandonq Literature, The Literary Wind of Ba Country and China, however, no other establishment literary journals showed an interest in publishing Li'^; work at that time.  85 The situation was to be somewhat different with regard to poetry anthologies published by establishment printing houses, however. Between 1988 and 1990, Lj Yawei's earlier work, primarily that written between 1984-1986, was published in at least six anthologies of contemporary Chinese experimental poetry (exploratory, avant-garde, third generation, and post-Misty were other frequently used terms). The reason for this discrepancy within the cultural establishment might lie in that literary journals are more tightly controlled, and that their editorial boards are manned by more elderly, conservative individuals than those of publishing houses. In addition, the 1980s witnessed the founding of many new publishing houses, while the number of nationally and regionally circulated literary journals has remained static, if in fact their number has not been reduced. Certainly, the introduction of "market socialism" has had its impact on state-owned literary journals and publishing in general. Since the mid-1980s, most literary journals have been forced to carry advertising and seek to earn operating capital in other ways due to diminishing state-subsidies. For example, beginning in 1986, Guandong Literature began to devote its odd-numbered monthly issues to popular pulp fiction, while even-numbered months were devoted to serious literature by young writers —  publishing serious literature alone  threatened the journal's viability, according to Zong Renfa, then editor-in-chief. The closure of a number of national and  86 local literary journals was, perhaps, inevitable, although, the 1987 closures of China and The Literary Wind of Ba Country for political reasons are clear exceptions. The popularity of recent poetry is perhaps best gauged by the willingness of publishing houses to publish collections of poetry and the size of print runs. The popularity of Misty poetry was attested to by the success of its first official anthology. Misty Poetry Selections [Menglong shixuan]: its first printing in November 1985 numbered 135,501 copies, and by the fifth reprint in April 1987, the print run had grown to 192,500. By comparison, the July 1992 first printing of The Happy Dance of the Light Filament  —  Post-Misty Poetry Selections [Dengxinrong xingfu de wudao — hou menglongshi xuancui] was accorded a run of only 30,500 copies by the Beijing Teacher's University Press. The prices of the two books, both being roughly the same size and length, are more or less equal once inflation and the rise in general income during the intervening period are taken into account. It should be pointed out that the majority of recent post-Misty poetry anthologies have print runs of well under 30,000 and none have yet found a large enough market to require reprinting.  1987 began badly for Li Yawei, as it did for many other underground poets in Sichuan, as a result of the province-wide crackdown on "bourgeois-liberal" thought and culture following nationwide student demonstrations in  87 December 1986 - January 1987. Li was questioned and required to make self-criticisms with regard to his underground poetry activities. He refused to cooperate and was ultimately suspended —  with pay, however —  from his  teaching post. Li took full advantage of what was otherwise new-found freedom to wander throughout China on a more-or-less full-time basis. He was able to do so because there were a number of fans of his poetry willing to help him in anyway they could.^^ Perhaps Li's best friend in this sense was Zong Renfa, initially the editor-in-chief of Guandonq Literature, who did all that he could to arrange for the publication of Li's poetry in north-eastern establishment journals. Macho Man poetry grew to have a lar^e following in the north-east partly as a result of Zong's efforts on behalf of Li and other Macho Man poets. Zong saw to it that Li's work was published in at least four issues of Guandonq Literature between 1986 and 1988. And in 1988, when Zong transferred to Changchun, the capital of Jilin province, to take on the post of assistant editor-in-chief of Author, a nationally circulated literary monthly, he saw to it that Li's poetry continued to be published on a regular basis in that journal. ^^ I met one in June 1989 at a literature conference in Fuling which Li Yawei, Liao Yiwu and I were invited to attend. Every month this middle-aged female writer would mail one hundred yuan to Li wherever he might be in China at that time.  88 During 1987, Li Yawei all but ceased to write poetry of the initial Macho Man variety. Now, while retaining many of the themes of his earlier poetry, he turned his hand to lyric poetry of more traditional thematic nature. The tone of bitterness and melancholy which had already entered into poems such as "An Ancient Friend" became more prominent. At the same time, Li seemed to be more at peace with himself and his poetry, if still feeling as much alone and alienated from both current poetic trends and society as before. The youthful optimism and spiritual vigour which had been so prominent in his early work had now been replaced by a tone of disappointed resignation. In May 1989, Li was awarded one of five poetry prizes for works published in Author during 1987-1988, for a collection of lyric verse entitled "The Inn in the Valley" [Xiagu jiudianj. "The Inn" [Jiudian] and "While I Was Standing" [Wo zhanzhe de shihou] tire e^tamples from this set of six poems of a new theme about a st/*ange, bitter kind of love addressed to women who are no longer present or women who were never there. In "The Inn," the innkeeper (a woman, perhaps Sun Erniang) of his imagination (or his muse) is a bridge to the spirit of ancient China, of China when y^ was culturally strong, virile and at peace with itself. Alcohol is merely a sedative which blocks out harsh reality, a process which lays the wounded spirit bare and allows it bleed outwards as poetry. Again, in "While I was Standing," "you" i-s a shy would-be  89 lover. Once in a "private accord" the two of them, the poet and his muse, will stand in full view of each other by the river which is the stream of life. This almost perfect union, given the always unfortunate fact that they cannot be together in it, is denied, for "you" is not there. All that there is to see is a vast wasteland. This appears to be yet another reference to the spiritual and cultural wasteland which Li considers today's China to be. As a recurrent reference it appears in the concluding lines of "Hard Men", ("Set out and see our vast world/See the wasteland history has left to us"), and again here in "Idle Words While Drinking" [Jiuliao]("The place of my birth/Has long been absolutely drained").^^ In "Crowded World" [Shijie yongji], Li is again by the river, this time near a dock where people crowd down into the mad rush of the world from off the boat which sails upon it. Stairs down the river bank into the river hint at the option of suicide as a way back to a life from which modern man appears to be alienated. Mankind lives in autumn where the dock is anchored, nearer the end than the beginning of life. "On the road home You are pushed to one side by your imagination You must live out the whole afternoon alone living in this view, from far away"-^* On the way back into that river (via death by whatever ^^Appendix pp. # 249, # 501. ^^pp. # 247, # 500.  90 route), the poet is singled out from the crowd by his imagination which leaves him alone and gazing out onto the solemn autumnal scene before him for the rest of his days. During the latter half of 1987, however, Li began work on a series of longer poems which, more in the manner of Not-Not than Macho Man, focused on language itself. In "The Island" [Dao], "The Mainland" [Ludi] and "The Sky" [Tiankong], Li sets about demonstrating the control which language has over people in general and poets in particular, and how far this language is divorced from reality. Li's previous rebellions had been against certain cultural and poetic traditions; he now begins an assault upon culture in general. "Everywhere on the mainland there are the ancients and stars and national borders! Everywhere on the borders are nuclear weapons and churches and fatherlands 1 Each Fatherland grows a great golden tree! The entire tree is draped with history and literature! Entire trees of dogs and damned things, entire trees of tasty, live puppies!^^ In one tableau, Li mixes together a series of the serious and the ridiculous, of sublime and base verbal images in an altogether too obvious mockery of the fixed values and codes of the world. These poems amount to little more than heavy handed attempts to destroy the supposed sanctity of tradition. But one question always presents itself: Is this truly necessary in today's China? Perhaps it can be justified as a response to the demands and criticism of Xv Appendix  pp. # 507-508.  91 establishment poets and critics, but only as a less than serious political use of an artistic medium in a battle that cannot be fought, much less won, within the realm of poetry. The anti-culture poet is bound to approach language in the same way as the culture poets whom poets such as Li Yawei and Liao Yiwu declare themselves the enemies of: their own language is motivated and manipuJated by the very facts which they explore. The results are never promising: "One poem. One woman. One opportunity; One wine cup. One small town. A man. Sound takes a sentence out of a book. Language reJies on the mind for content. Past events extract colors from cloth. Not sublime. Not serious. Also not humorous." "The Island"^** "Walk over and say you. Come here and say me. Above man below woman. Man left woman right. Superior man inferior woman. One day. Call you a woman. Call me a man. Afterwards everyone starts to move about. Man walks over. Woman comes here. You left I right. On the mainland. Our only chance is to travel toward the distant place." "The Mainland"^^ "This world is merely a linguistic phenomenon That person has a relationship with you because of a certain form Because of grammar, because of silence, rhythm Because of written language that person coincidentally makes poetry with you He hangs on a function word, lets actions and words co3lude together Passing through unreliable paragraphs you enter into your mind" "The Sky" ("The Feather" [ Yu] j''^ ^^Appendix pp.# 504. ^^pp. # 505. ^°pp. # 514.  92 In the end, the history of poetry shows that those who rebel against the institution are bound to enter into it. The coarse, common, savage arts ultimate]y become accepted practice, even modern classics (such as Ginsberg's "Howl"). These poems of Li's were, perhaps, recognition of this fact and a final attempt to reject a similar fate, which, at the time in 1987 and early 1988 however, seemed to have been temporarily forestalled as a result of CCP campaign's against "bourgeois-liberalization." In a statement oi his views on poetry publj shed together with "The Island" and "The Mainland" in the April 3 988 edition of Guandong Literature, Li stated "writing poetry is a way of life, the writing of a certain style of poetry is a way of saying something, writing the poetry of some -ism or school is empty talk." In light of this and the two poems published together with the statement, it would appear that Li is ridiculing both himself in his attempt to write such poetry and others for actually doing so: "There are too many statements about poetry, too many demands; poetry will disappoint people, poetry will appear to be nothing at all. Actually, poetry is probably everything. '.'More and more I suspect that my poems are novels, or something else. Like a thing; after a poem is written, when it is put down it should be a flying pig, picked up it is a glass of foul wine, thrown up in the air it is a slovenly cloud, Sometimes I believe my poems are purely actions: fighting,.... crying, drinking, birth, death, parting,.. •• •  "^^Appendix pp. # 502.  93 A poet's reputation and its longevity is determined by the tastes of others. Macho Man poetry, in its initial form, was written in accordance with the naturalist formula Li espouses above. It was not, however, written for a specific audience (aside from perhaps Macho Man poets themselves), but simply as the expression of the as yet untamed spirit of young men bucking up against systems of thought and Chinese society which pressed in upon them at all quarters. The above statement might be understood as an explanation of or comment on the continuing popularity of much of the verse he and other Macho Man poets wrote prior to 1986. While continuing to write poetry in this spirit, now primarily in a short lyric form which was suited to it and which also reflected Li's maturity as a poet and a new-found respect for the art itself, early in 1989, Li began experimenting with a new verse form and a new approach to poetry which encapsulated more completely the world view already glimpsed in some of his earlier post-1986 poetry: " I often feel that my seasoned and mature command of the Chinese language has distanced me from poetry. After the most satisfying work is committed to the written language, it begins to fail to. meet expectations. Therefore, the life-and-death battle between a poet and language is natural, as is his vested literary talent. I began writing poetry in 1981, a few years later I finally discovered that I had already got the hang of all its tricks: If I don't destroy language, I can't get used to life in this world. I've never been poetically close to industry, science; cities and so on, if at the same time these things are actually romantic, that is only because something beyond the thing itself has  94 occurred or appeared [to make it so]. Otherwise, they can only be the paint, fearful of loneJiness, on the cultural backdrop. Because this kind of cultural edifice, like extant language, is merely a thing on the present stage of mankind's development. Mankind is currently developing at a terrific speed, on the next stage these things will probably be all gone, just as in the beginning mankind cast aside mountain caves, stone implements and wild body fur, and entered into civilization and cities. In the future mankind will also cast off extant science, symbols and systems, and enter into another kind of living space. Fortunately, I have attained an undying spirit within poetry! Even though my poems are still composed of existing, written Chinese characters, these are gentle thoughts of sickness, birth, agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries, the beverage industry and plants, they are confused remembrances of people and simple depictions. It's not so much that I think overly highly of my literary talent but that poetry has led me to grasp the everlasting light of life, thereby leading me to immerse myself in man's final external form — dreaming amidst the body's fragrances and aspiring to gently ily up upon the final enemy and final form of poetry — language."^^ This new futuristic tone of optimism was reilected in Li's new poems which he apparently viewed as his "autumn harvest" (qiushou), both the name of one of these poems and a term repeatedly used by Li in other poems of this period. This statement was written just after Li had completed writing "The Flight" [Feixing], an ode to his own maturity as a poet. However, it was primarily an ode to the wonders of the imagination and to the transcendent driving spirit behind the lines which appear clumsily, but magically, upon the page:  At your place of origin, along the pupils of the liquor bottles the cellar's look is rolling ^ ^ Appendix  pp. # 517.  95 Showing that alcohol doesn't get itself drunk, sixty-five proof won't numb fifty-seven Alcohol is just one of the things that fly off on their own But you can't lower your head and stare down, this isn't any different from the assiduous study of texts Page by page the waves of the ocean are flipped open Reading sail upon saj1 from the strait to the cape Land on the opposite shore and you won't die You're thinking of heavenly things, you have to only think of how high the clouds are And it equals riding a horse It sends you farther than turning the pages of a book one by one Probably your fall off the horse happened between the words and the lines Because you ducked your head and looked down, it may have taken shape in a script But it isn't important, you're totally illiterate, even waiting to die isn't easy I am still the one who travelled the farthest Because after renouncing isolated entanglements circling in the air became very easy Just like the returning of wheat in autumn fields to the sky I gallop like a horse, like the long hairs of the wind trailing the whitest clouds Just like the view of the autumn seen by people riding the wings of opium, driving the great ether wind and climbing up to the heights to gather it in''^"-^ No longer is Li struggling with his mode of existence in the world, now he lives within his poetry, within the river of life which he often commented sadly upon in early poems. His final battles shall be fought out in and with a language that ultimately proves inadequate in the expression of that spirit and freedom found in the imagination and his own physical being. In one of Li's last poems written before his arrest in zrsAppendix pp. # 253-254, # 520.  96 March 1990, "We" [Women], written in September 1989, he offers what appears to be a fanciful retrospective and summing up of the fate and circumsl.ances of the Macho Man poets between the years 1984-1986. However, the poem could also be read as referring more generally to the fate of third generation poets and their poetry, or even to that of all Chinese of Li Yawei's generation in the wake of the Tian'anmen Massacre. The human imagination forms and guides our world and ourselves, there can be no escape from its terrible power. And in recognition of this, Li finally finds an inner peace of sorts, an accommodation he can and must live with, and an understanding of the world and his place in it:  We came up from the surface We suffer a sudden inter-weave on the antipodes of longitude and latitude We throw ourselves into weaving, form patterns, raise our heads and attain love Wearing flowered clothing we throw ourselves into revolutions, and meet up with The Leader We wander round, cross borders, and even earn ourselves another Though we might only be walking on the street It's also a product of dreams, nothing is real or unreal Anyway you look at it, all are characters of the imagination Walking outside, yet sticking precisely to contours of thought"^* Li details man's inability to transcend systems of thought, culture and civilization, all creations of the human imagination from which there can be no escape. However, "Our camels change shape, our line is fake •Appendix pp. # 257, # 523.  97 now/When it comes down to it, we are still strugglers." Perhaps for this reason Li chose to join together with Liao Yiwu and four other poets and friends (including Wan Xia, one of the original Macho Men) in Chongqing to produce a videotape version of Liao's poem, "Slaughter." Possibly the temptation of a new form of struggle against the existing order of the imagination was too much for Li to resist. Although Li was to some extent willing to accept authority within the context of poetry, "We" still betrayed a longing for the savage rebelliousness and physicality of his Macho Man days (the three years referred to in the poem, 1984-1986). Li had never used his poetry for political purposes. His poetry had always plumbed the imagination for the freedom and companionship he was often unable to realize in Chinese society. Not surprisingly, aside from one or two ambiguous lines within "We," Li makes no attempt to deal specifically with the events of June 4, 1989 and its aftermath. Instead, "We" appears to reveal the inability of poets, of all mankind, to break free of the imagined ties and relationships which bind us all together. Neither real nor unreal, aside from protest which is doomed to fail, poetry is no more than a record of the helpless ineptitude of man in his struggle to come to terms with himself. In this light, June 4 was merely a minor horror in the fantastic practical joke which man has been forever playing on himself. For Li, "We" and his arrest on March 25, 1990  98 marked the end of his imaginative and physicaJ struggles with what is commonly known as reality. Perhaps his silence as a poet since his release two years later is indicative of his surrender to it. It is also quite possible that his spirit was broken by the beatings and torture he was subjected to during his 23 month incarceration.^^ If this is the case, perhaps his recent marriage is an indication that his internal healing process is nearing completion. Possibly, in the not too distant future, Li Yawei will be able to bring himself to write poetry once again.  '•^''I had heard rumors of all six being beaten and tortured in 1990, however, I have only recently received direct confirmation that this was indeed the case. All but one, Ba Tie, the poetry critic, held up under this pressure and solitary confinement with no visitors (except a court-appointed lawyer) before charges of "incitement to counter-revolution" related to the videotape were dropped and all, except Liao Yiwu, were released in late February 1992.  99  Chapter ^ ) ZHOU LUNYOU: ON THE KNIFE'S EDGE  "The pass to poetry is granted only by faith in its sacramental character and a sense of responsibility for everything that happens in the world."^  Come the next bout of political repression in China, Zhou Lunyou will no doubt be arrested and once again shipped off to a remote prison camp in the mountains of Sichuan. With the Fall 1992 publication of issue No. 5 of Not-Not, the underground poetry journal edited by Zhou since 1986, he has almost certainly booked a second passage into China's gulag archipelago. This time, however, there will be more justification, from the CCP's point of view, than in the first instance (August 1989 - September 1991). For Not-Not No. 5 opens with Zhou's poetry manifesto, "Red Writing," which essentially is a call to arms directed towards all Chinese writers and poets asking them to take up the literary cudgels lain aside by the underground writers of the foinner Soviet Union and its Eastern European satellites, in the battle against the CCP's continuing attempt at dictatorship over thought. Born in 1952, Zhou Lunyou has personally experienced CCP political oppression his entire life. His parents, having ^Nadezhda Mandelstam, Hope Abandoned, (London: Collins Harvill, 1989), p. 96.  100 served the Chinese Nationalists prior to 1949, were subjected to persecution during each of the political campaigns which washed over China in seemingly endless waves until 1976. Residing in the town of Xichang in remote western Sichuan further added to the Zhou family's difficulties. As is the case in smaller Chinese towns, a smaller population often means that the victims of political campaigns often become permanent scape goats placed at the top of the list of the "usual suspects" to be rounded up with each new campaign. Inevitably, in the early 1960s, the Zhou family was ordered out into the countryside near Xichang in order to have their class-consciousness rectified by toiling with the farmers on the land. Before this occurred, however, the Zhou's eldest son had been able to win a place at university. He was driven mad, however, by mental and physical persecution during the CR because of a theoretical article he wrote deemed critical of the regime. To this day, the Zhou family still pays to have him kept by a housekeeper in a mountain cottage near Xichang. Driven into the countryside and unable to attend school after only .three years of primary education, Zhou Lunyou and his elder twin brother, Zhou Lunzuo, began a program of intensive self-education (against the wishes of their parents). With the death of Mao and the fall of the Gang of Four in 1976, the education system slowly returned to a  .103 state of pre-1964 normalcy, and the two brothers were able to complete college degrees in 1979. Like his elder brother, however, Zhou Lunzuo's interests also lay in politics and political philosophy. A high-school teacher, because of published papers deemed critical of the CCP, he was twice arrested, in 1980 and 1987, and on each occasion administratively sentenced to two years of "thought reform through labor" (laodong gaizao). Zhou brother number four was sentenced to life imprisonment on trumped up charges of rape (of a girlfriend who was the daughter of a high official) in the early 1980s. And in early 1990, the youngest of the five brothers, whom his parents had successfully kept out of school and illiterate in an attempt to avoid political persecution, was killed in a car accident. The driver of the other vehicle was clearly at fault, but has never been charged in the matter. (Up until that time, this boy and his wife had been able to parlay Deng's economic reform policies into a thriving chicken-farm enterprise which allowed him to drive Xichang's first privately-owned taxi cab and purchase a newly built apartment.) With this sort of background, it would seem reasonable to expect that the poetry of Zhou Lunyou would reflect some of his experience, or at least be more overtly political than other underground Chinese poets. This was not the case.  102 however, until after the Tian'anmen Massacre in 1989, and, possibly, only as a result of his own arrest. Like the vast majority of Chinese poets and writers, despite personal suffering and witnessing the suffering of others, Zhou initially chose not to write on these subjects or dared only to hint at them ambiguously. For most Chinese poets, poetry either is a release from reality into a place where they can dwell upon the more pleasant or hopeful aspects of life, or it is an immersion in the abstractions of philosophy, historiography and, in recent years, a plethora of imported and traditional poetics. Fear of the CCP and the traditional scholar-would-be-government-official syndrome are the reasons for this. There has never been a tradition of active dissidence or independence of thought for the artist or intellectual in China. The romantici2ed figure of the hermit who shuns any role in society was abolished in 1949 when the CCP established a totalitarian regime that stretched into all corners of the country and effectively forbade non-participation in society as a lifestyle option. Thus, the poetry of Zhou Lunyou was necessarily of an acceptable vein when it first began to be published in the CCP's literary journals in the early 1980s. Among his works were poems strongly influenced by the Misty poets and Chinese poetic tradition such as "The Solitary Pine" [Gusong] and "Spring Festival" [Chunjie], both included among translated  103 poetry in the Appendix.^ Neither was Zhou beneath writing poems which met the political requirements of the regime and sang the praises of the working man and China's new, hopeful post-Mao era. Desires for publication, recognition and poetic community see many poets write poems like Zhou's "The Black Statue" [Heise de diaosu],^ only to see these same poets turn their backs upon such exercises at later dates. Not all do, however, and it is they who publish and prosper in the CCP's poetry and publishing establishments. It is not easy to turn away from the allure of lifetime empJoyment and reward within the system, a system brimming with perks, including trips overseas as representatives of contemporary Chinese literature. But by 1984, Zhou had successfully overcome these temptations, if in fact, considering his background, they had ever truly existed for him. After his graduation from China's television university in 1979, Zhou Lunyou had continued his personally designed course of self-study. In the early 1980s, he read all that he could of the Western literature, literary and linguistic theory, and philosophy which was then being translated and published in China. On July 25, 1984, Zhou had published the first of a series of poems written as self-analysis: "The Man with the Owl" [Dai maotouying de nanren]. Over the next three years, ^Appendix pp. # a 5 9 / # 5'2.5 • pp. # ^GO , # 53L6 .  .104the exclusive subject of Zhou's poetry was "Man." Focusing on experience, human nature and reason, and the mask of personality, or personae, he exposes the adventures of the human spirit under the control of the unconscious, and the automatic nature of man's manipulation of (and by) language. Through perceptual experience, illusions and dreams, he explores the irrational aspects of life by way of formal linguistic management of the conscious and the unconscious. "The Man with the Owl," first published in Modern Poetry Exchange Materials, is a super-empirical cultural meditation intended to expose the pain and revelations resulting from alienation of the Self from culture. In "Valley of the Wolf [Langguj," a cycle of poems written early in 1985 and published in Chinese Contemporary Experimental Poetry, Zhou employs monologues of the unconscious to express psychological abnormalities resulting from pressure on the Self from the Super Ego and the Id. Half of the poems in the cycle are in fact linguistic analysis of Western surrealist and abstract art works, and the other half are poetic experiments with Freudian theory using symbols of the unconscious as he does in the poem, "The White Wolf" [Bailang].^. Taken together, the cycle appears in the form of a split personality in order to describe the internal spiritual conflict that Zhou apparently experiences. "Appendix pp. #a^3  , # SO^S  '  105 In "Man-Sun" [RenriJ, published in Han_Poetry; TwentJeth Century Historical Annals - 1986, Zhou continues with this over-arching theme in using irrational life experiences to portray the experience of individual man. This poem concludes with a conversation between the poet and Zhuangzi, and the lines: "Zhuangzi is merely thoughts of the butterfly/The butterfly is merely Zhuangzi's wings."^ These remarks appear to be designed as a satiric comment on the fascination of so-called roots poetry with Zhuangzi and ancient belief systems similarly devoted to interpretations of reality, such as oracle bones and The Book of Changes, which Zhou also refers to within the poem. "The roots of the tree are rotten, but its leaves are still fresh  [My]  rootless drifting starts here."^ The culture at the base of these beliefs and symbols aJready being dead, they can offer no more than inspiration for contj nued irrational flights of the imagination. "Let the content disappear, all that remains of the entire world is sacred abstraction./ Yet I live concretely."^ In "The Thirteen-Step Flight of Stairs" [Shisanji taijie], written in early May 1986, Zhou continues to employ irrational experience .as he proceeds to map out a thirteen-step evolution of human life up until the point that "finished walking the thirteen—step flight of stairs You are no longer a man of language,"** ho has reached a state of pure -'Appendix pp. # 53"^. ^pp. i 5^1 . 'pp. # $3] . ''pp. # 537 .  106 perception free of all the obfuscating cultural baggage which began with the willful naming of things on the first step of the stairs. This poem was published in Zhou's own underground poetry journal. Not-Not. Karly in 3 986, Zhou got together with a number of like-minded underground poets, principally Lan Ma and Yang Li who acted as assistant editors to Zhou's position as editor-in-chief, in Chengdu. Between them they resolved to create a school of poetry which would be unique to China, a course of action which they felt was preferable to slavish imitation of Western poetic practice and theory, and which would ultimately allow modern Chinese poetry to become a recognized, full-fledged member of the world's poetic community. In order to achieve this goal, not only did they resolve to found the underground journal. Not-Not, but they also composed the "Not-Not-ism Manifesto" [Feifeizhuyi xuanyan], "Not-Not-ism Poetry Methods" [Feifeizhuyi shige fangfa] and even "A Small Dictionary of Not-Not-ism" [Feifeizhuyi xiaocidianj which offered explanations of terms used in these poets' critical articles. (Both the Manifesto and the Dictionary were updated or enlarged in subsequent issues of the journal.) In order to prove the necessity of Not-Not-ism, Zhou authored an essay, "Structural Change: A Record of the Revelations of Contemporary Art" [Biangou: dangdai yishu qishiluj, which by detailing the causes and effects of the fundamental developments which affected Western art early in this  107 century, sought to offer an explanation for the appearance of Not-Not-ism in China. Also at this time, Zhou decided to dedicate himself entirely to this cause: He resigned as librarian of the Xichang AgriculturaJ Training School and, with the full support of his wife, Zhou Yaqin, resolved to devote himself on a full-time basis to the Not-Not cause. He also resolved that from that day forward he would no longer beat his head against the wall of the poetry establishment and submit poetry or essays to establishment literary journals, a promise he has kept over the past seven-plus years. His poetry and essays have appeared in such publications, but only upon request by sympathetic editors. The poets of Not-Not claimed as their goal ridding Chinese poetry of all unnecessary and harmful cultural and linguistic baggage, and returning it to a concrete, practical language of neutral intent. "Not-Not-ism Poetry Methods," written by Zhou and Lan Ma together, in combination with the Manifesto was to be a blueprint towards what they hoped would be a school of poetry that could accomplish this task. Under the heading "Not-Not-ism and the return of creativity to its original state" [Feifeizhuyi yu chuangzuo huanyuan] (a desire expressed in Zhou's "Thirteen-step Stairway"), they issued three statements of intent: "(1) We want tp dispose of the semantic obstacles to sensory activity ...fand achieve] the restoration of the senses to their original state. "(2) We want to dispose of every kind of boundary  108 formed by the semantic network on the television screen of consciousness ... [and achieve] the restoration of consciousness to its original state. "(3) The languages of culture all contain ossified semantics. Only suited to fixed operations of the cultural variety, they are powerless to undertake the expression of pre-cultural experience ... [We want to achieve] the restoration of language to its original state."^ As the carrier of cultural traditions, language recrives special attention: "(1) We are resoJved to transcend duaJistic 'right' and 'wrong' value judgements ...and attain an open nature of pluralistic or even limitless values. "(2) In writing poetry, we will strive to rid language of abstraction, sweep away the fixed qualities of abstract linguistic concepts and, in the description of things, clear out acts of inference and the judgements found in reasoning. "(3) Fixed semantic meaning is the cause of language's loss of vitality. By way of irregularity and the construction of a variable linguistic state, we wi31 make some of the old, decrepit language shine once again with the brilliance of regained youth, having reacquired what had been lost — a polysemant (multiple-meaning), non-fixed, multifunctional nature."^° Finally, if it were not already clearly the case, Zhou and Lan Ma took Not-Not-ism well beyond the bounds of poetry and language alone by proposing what they called a "method of creative criticism" (chuang2uo pipingfa). Here again they listed three points of major emphasis: "With regard to sense perception, our criticism intends to eliminate the semantic sensations of culture, mood-sensations and sensations patterned by 'Appendix pp. # 538-539 ^°pp. # 539.  109 habit. With regard to consciousness, our criticism intends to eliminate surface-layer collective consciousness (the consciousness of realistic cultural values such as material gain, knowledge, concepts, etc.) and deep-layer collective consciousness (the consciousness of inherited cultural values such as reason, logic, finalized and semi-finalized imagery, etc.). With regard to language, our criticism intends to eliminate abstract terms of fixed value, terms with dualistjc value tendencies, and the traditional vocabulary of rhetoric."^^ Clearly, their desire was to return, on at least a spiritual level, to a pre-cultural or non-cultural world from where a new culture or cultures could spring forth exnihilo and coexist Ireely and in perpetuity. Implicit in the manifesto, and presented more explicitly in essays by Zhou and Lan Ma in the first four issues of Mot.-Not between 1986-1989, was the fact that their poetics were, jn part, a response to the weakened hold of China's traditional culture, the continuing attempts by the CCP to fuse a spiritless "new spiritual civilization" (xin jingshen wenming) onto what remained of it, and the rapid rise of a culture of crass utilitarian pragmatism resulting, in part, from Deng's economic reforms and the selective opening to Western pop culture during the 1980s. (See pages 121-125 for criticism oi Not-Not-ism.) In reality, however, according to Zhou, the basis of Chinese culture remained the native conglomeration of animistic, Confucian, Daoist and Buddhist intellectual and social traditions. Attempts to introduce Western traditions and X T Appendix  pp. # 539  .IJO concepts (such as democracy, socialism, and even new poetic forms and "modernism") over the preceding 100 years had resulted in thin veneers over the old forms. WhiJe outward forms and surfaces sometimes appeared to change, the inertia of over 2,000 years of tradition ensured that content would be little affected. In the realm of the arts, Zhou pointed to tht^ frequently lifeless intellectual game of copying Western modernism which, while initially intriguing and useful tools for self-promotion, in the end had amounted to no more than fads of copying which had not taken root in Chinese soil. Zhou expounded these views in a series of essays, beginning in 1986, written as assessments of the underground poetry movement and contemporary Chinese modernist poetry in generaJ. In an essay entitled "An-Li-Values" [Fan jiazhi], published in Not-Not No. 3 (December 1988), Zhou proposed an attack on all value systems then prevalent in China's arts and society in general. The mere destruction of language, form and perceptual modes could do no more than minor, temporary damage. It was the values which propped up the cultural superstructure that made men slaves to the languages they lived in. Only by eliminating the core value words (such as the beauty, truth, love, etc.) and their attendant verbs, nouns and adjectives, by eliminating opposing value structures (such as good versus bad, true versus false, etc.) and implicit or explicit value judgement in language of which all languages of culture Consist, can there be true freedom and genuine democracy in the arts —  and, by implication, in  m al.l other areas of society. In conclusion, Zhou states that he is well aware that his proposals cannot be adopted without placing mankind in unprecedented difficulties. His main purpose is to call the readers attention to a situation in which all are placed by value-loaded language and to the assumptions which predicate the existence of man. Once one is aware of the situation, which Zhou likens to a game, and of the rules (value systems) by which it is played, the individual will have the ability to opt out and to act as an independent entity. The concluding paragraph of "Anti-Values" sums up the positions of Zhou Lunyou and Not-Not-ism in general: "The value exercises of mankind compare well to a ball game: My father's generation and the father generations of my father's generation all enthusiastically joined in — getting into the championship match and claiming the prize being the highest objective. They never thought about who fixed the entire set of rules which controlled the competition, or whether the rules were reasonable, and so on. Before myself, there have been some who have refused to join the contest. This wasn't because they had grown tired of the protracted competition, or because they had become suspicious of it, but because they knew full well that they could not come out victorious. They chose to adopt an attitude of refusal in order to save face. As far as I'm concerned, the question is not whether or not to refuse to join in the match, the problem I have discovered is more important by far than the match itself: The value based behavior of mankind is merely a game, and in this game we are the ones being played with. What actually controls the game are a few terms and a self-manipulating set of rules which comes with them. These terms and their rules throw you, us, them, this flock of stupid things into a game of chance, they make us perform with ourselves as audience. After the wheel had spun a  112 few times, I finally understood: I am in it, but I must not be in itl By way of destroying its sacred rules I will stop this great game, and, furthermore, replace it with new rules — This, then, is what I am now doing and want you to join together with me to do. Let's do it together1 "The realization of anti-values is, therefore, the creation of new values — only when that is achieved can one say: I have moved one step forward. ""^^ Zhou Lunyou's next major poem, "Free Squares" [Ziyou fangkuai], published in Not-Not No. 3 (1987), is his attempt to embody and demonstrate in poetic form the value-based linguistic game in which mankind is caught. For this poem, Zhou takes on the role of a satirist and regales the reader throughout with his trenchant sardonic wit. Zhou chooses a satiric stance in order to better expose the discord between the individual and culture in general. He exaggerates the conflict and seeks a form of psychological balance by way of evasive twists and turns and counter-actions to it. The contradictions he himself must have experienced are prominent throughout the poem: man is at ease with himself but unable to act for himself; he is impulsive but unable to act freely; he is alone but unable to keep his silence, and so on. A satiric poet is, of course, a rebel, but because the poem's internal monologue is presented as an aside, it takes on an instructive, revelatory form. The pose of the satirist is that of having complete comprehension; the poet attempts to transcend the absurd nature of the world he lives in. Zhou's intention is to overcome this absurdity by way of Ts-Appendix  pp. # 566 .  113 word games. For example, part one of "Free Squares" is an expression of extreme scepticism in the believability of poses in and of themselves: "The pose should be paid attention to. As a traditional beauty pays attention to the look of her face. For example, she does not bare her teeth when laughing. For instance, not being allowed to cast sidelong glances. Pierre Cardin chooses you as a model  Sit by  the south wall. Sit facing the wall. All these are ways in which the wise ones would sit. You're not a sage. You don't think the supreme lord is about to come down among us. You can sit more casually  "^'  "Pose" (zishi) is perhaps better translated as "position." The term appears to refer to the role an individual chooses or is assigned within culture. The pose determines the individual's relationship with culture and other individuals but bears little relation, in Zhou's conception of the situation, to the basic nature and instincts of the individual. Part one of "Free Squares," entitled "Motive I: Position Plan" [Dongji yi: zishi sheji], seeks to expose the inhuman nature of culture. Alienated man (uncertain, unsettled, with little self control) doesn't know if his pos6 should be based on instinct or agreement with cultural conventions. Knowledge is the cause of his indecisiveness. An evil culture has already entered his bloodstream (this is similar to Liao Yiwu's belief that one's nation is one's fate), he has no choice but to shrivel up and -'^Appendix pp. # 2,6 5 / # S^l  '.  114 die spiritually in choosing between the two. This appears to be abnormal, but is in fact the normal situation of all people. The tragedy is that this person in search of a pose is not learning from the experience of life's tragedy, but as quickly as possible searches out a pose in which to reside and there to accustom himself to his alienated reality. This act exposes the degree to which he has already been twisted by that reality. Throughout this first part, Zhou makes constant, direct and indirect, allusion to the figures and "poses" of classical Chinese poetry, in addition to Buddhism and other ancient philosophies and practices. It is apparent that to some degree his satire is directed against certain trends among China's poets which he had already touched upon in critical essays written before and after the writing of "Free Squares." Just as deliberately, "Motive I" is written in a style designed to impress upon the reader the often unconscious, reflexive nature of pose picking, or "position design." Zhou achieves this affect by stringing together allusions to Chinese classical poetry, philosophy and religion in a way that approaches interior monologue, somewhat similar to stream of consciousness technique. (Here, also, we see the poets paradoxical relationship with traditional culture: Using it for "inspiration" while denying it as a living tradition.) In "Motive V: The Salt of Refusal" [Dongji wu: jujue zhi yan], Zhou writes of the individual's feelings of anxiety and  115 atrophy. Here "you" are a sacrificial offering to traditional culture. The anxiety of "you" is the result of the simultaneous expiration of both the life of the individual and traditional culture (a thinly veiled reference to the ascension of the CCP to power in 1949), and is not the product of a post-industrial society (as it is in modern Western poetry). "When necessary learn how to shake your head or wave your hand If both your head and your hand are not free You must learn silence"'^'* All paths are closed to the individual by a list of over twenty refusals. The refusals of "you" are not those of an Ah Q-like character (self-aggrandizing), but are rooted in feelings of self-abasement, of being abandoned or discarded, and the lack of any spiritual goal whatsoever. Traditional culture has taught "you" only two things: the blind following of others (blind faith), and mindless refusal. In the midst of all this, "you" feel nothing: "Refusing is an art. The attacking army is at the walls You're still enjoying your siesta Shuffle the chessmen idly At the Pavilion of Uninterrupted Leisure listen to the water and the fish"^'' On the surface the appearance of composed correctness is an expression of self-abasement and abandonment. We (which can be alternatively read "as all Chinese people, the generation who grew up during the CR, or the poets who have ^^Appendix pp. #2.^?, f ^13 .  ^^pp. # 0.10 , # S74-.  1.16 emerged from that generation) are left at the side of the road by the rest of the world. The poet is in misery, he scorns his soul, his spirit, his Self, and yet cries out for them at the same time. In "Motive IV: West of Tahiti" [Dongji liu: taxiti yi xi], the concluding section of "Free Squares," Zhou returns to his pet subject of abstract painters and their paintings —  this time Paul Gauguin, who also protested against  the "disease" of civilization and set out for Tahiti in 1891, there doing some of his best work and writing the autobiographical novel, NoajNoa. Here and in the second half of this section Zhou deals with Daoist philosophy and the illusory, arbitrary nature of attributing meaning to cultural artifacts. Ultimately: " — You didn't come from anywhere. — —  You aren't anything. You aren't going anywhere.  (Where did we come from? (Who are we? (Where are we going 7  I eat therefore I am. And that's all there is to it. (You meditate on a step of the stair. Make a circuit of the dome. There's no door in or out. You sit down and don't ever want to get up again)""^'^ In Zhou's next major poem, "Portrait of the Head" [Touxiang], written in 1987 but published in the January 1989 issue of Not-Not No. 5, he continues to mock the earnest nature of the various mien of Man. A drawing of a human head complete T5  Appendix pp. # Xjl , # 5 7 6 .  117 with facial features at the top of the manuscript slowly loses those features so that by the fifth and final section of the poem nothing of the head remains at all: Man has lost himself among the illusory symbols of culture. Finally the poet declares: "GREAT VIRTUE. Real people don't expose their faces. Like an antelope hanging its horns in a tree while it sleeps. No trace to be found "GREAT VIRTUE- Personality is a mask. For people to look at. Whether lofty or refined is determined by the plot of the play. A hero without a head. Without scruples "^ ' In this section of the poem, Zhou addresses himself to "you" (nimen) in the plural. It becomes apparent that he is addressing his remarks to China's modern day literati and intellectuals in general: "The world isn't a problem. Problems are a form of addiction. Fabricate a balloon out of nothing and then explode it."^** Zhou appears to be referring to man's love of abstracting an unreal thing out of something real, creating problems where none had previously existed. "[You] have caused this world to lose its face,"^^ it has been made to become something else, just as man's innate nature has been buried beneath the abstractions of culture. In the end Zhou appears to make an appeal for simplicity in Chinese poetry, in line with Not-Not's call for a restoration of the senses, consciousness and language to "^'Appendix pp. #  ^^pp. # 5n . ""pp. #5S+ •  ^S^.  1.18 their original state, when he concludes this poem with the lines; "More plum blossoms and less of that/Vacancy."^° Zhou's discarding of the lyrical language of poetry is also part of his rebellion against so-called poses, even though, therefore, he has no choice but to choose another type of non-lyrical ironic pose. To the satirist, reality is revealed in an absurd fonn, this then is the reason Zhou uses an extremely bored speaking voice to express the design (affected, artificial creation) of poses in "Free Squares," or the completion (concealment and elimination) of the portrait of the head. Not surprisingly, Zhou's criticism of other poets both within his poetry but, primarily, in his critical essays was not appreciated by China's underground poets. Many dismissed him as merely political, believing he was grandstanding for the establishment in order to help Not-Not achieve official acceptance. The slick, well-edited nature of Not-Not's numerous publications may also have led to some degree of envy. Not-Not No. 1 had been printed in Sichuan with a print run of 2,000 copies (as had all subsequent editions). Most of the journals were sold for five yuan, a sum which covered printing costs alone. No. 1 was eighty pages in length and was one of the most elegantly designed underground journals ever to appear in China. On May 4, 1987, Not-Not No. 2 (140 pages) was published, one year after the first edition. "Ttm  Appendix pp. # 5^6  J19 (The date. May 4, was consciously chosen for both issues in order to convey to readers that Not-Not was carrying on in the May Fourth Movement's spirit of totalistic rejection of tradition. Not-Not, however, sought to reject Western tradition as well as Chinese.) During that year, Zhou also compiled and edited three four-page broadsheets of regular newspaper-size entitled Not-Not Criticism [Feifei pinglunj, two of which featured critical and theoretical essays written by Zhou and other Not-Not poets and theorists, and one of which was a compilation of several articles written about Not-Not published in China's literary establishment media and in Hongkong. With the crackdown which followed nationwide student demonstrations in January 1987, Not-Not was officially banned in Sichuan province. This impediment was circumvented, however, when Not-Not No. 2 was published outside of the province. Also, in the fall and winter of 1986, Zhou Lunyou, like Liao Yiwu and Li Yawei, had been invited to lecture on Not-Not-ism at several universities and colleges in Sichuan, and had met with large, enthusiastic audiences. While these activities Ccune to an abrupt halt in 1987, 1988 brought another relaxation in the CCP-controlled cultural climate and Zhou found himself officially invited to a handful of establishment poetry conferences. In April of that year, parts 1, 2 and 5 of "Free Squares" were published for the first time in the literary establishment, by the liberally edited Author out of Changchun. Portions of the poem have since been published in at least three poetry anthologies.  120 (In the spring of 1987, Liao Yiwu published the poem in its entirety in the underground journal. The Modernist Poets of Sichuan.) Zhou was also asked to write several theoretical essays and rebuttals to criticisms of Not-Not by establishment literary publications, such as The Poetry Press, Contemporary Poetry [Dangdai shige] and Poetry Monthly. After the completion of "Portrait of the Head" in October 1987, Zhou devoted almost all his time to the activities detailed above. During a period of almost two years following that date he failed to produce a poem which he saw fit to publish in his own journal. Not-Not No. 3 (150 pages), printed in Wuhan, Hubei province, appeared in December 1988 and was entirely devoted to theory and criticism, including "Anti-Values" and one other essay by Zhou Lunyou. A month later, in January 1989, Not-Not No. 4(146 pages), also printed in Wuhan, and given over entirely to poetry including Zhou's "Portrait of the Head," went into circulation. Police harassment of Not-Not's chief contributors and editors, Zhou, Lan Ma and Yang Li, had begun in 1987 shortly after the initial ban on Not-Not was issued, but never went beyond questioning and verbal chastisement. The liberal atmosphere that marked the first half of 1989 saw police agents visiting Zhou in Xichang and asking politely for copies of Not-Not No. 3 and 4. Apparently, word had reached the authorities, no doubt from the Sichuan literary establishment, that two new editions were in circulation. Zhou,  121 of course, did not oblige their request (the journals had been distributed already and Zhou had only a few personal copies left, none of which he was prepared to surrender to his mortal enemies). In fact, by this time, Not-Not had already ceased to exist. As a result of serious differences, both personal and ideological, Zhou had broken up his partnership with Lan Ma and Yang Li not long after the January publication of Not-Not No. 4. Not-Not would continue, however, but now Zhou planned to put out a version of his own, and Lan Ma and Yang Li another. But, perhaps, the root basis of this parting of the ways was to be found in the weakness of Not-Not-ism itself. Based on an urge to break free of the restrictions placed upon poets by a language weighed down by cultural traditions, Not-Not-ism had focused on culture, language and values to such an extent that very little was actually said about poetry. Their attempt to transcend culture and language was, of course, impossible, a fantastic dream. The super-language which they aspired to was still a language, just as the super-culture which was associated with it was still a culture. Deep-rooted cultural influences were bound to remain, as would a certain inherited aesthetic consciousness and other psychological elements. The return to a pre-cultural state which Not-Not-ism advocated would mean the end of poetry, for the poet can do nothing else but use language to express himself. Neither was it clear what language was to be transcended.  .122 If it was "normal," everyday speech, it takes on a transcendent quality once it is written as poetry in any case. It they were referring to an over-used language of ossified semantic meaning, then their's was a quest after a new poetic language and a refurbished version of estrangement theory. It is also not clear how symbolic meaning, metaphoric meaning, and changes in meaning which result from different linguistic states are not also to be considered as transcending language and semantics. It also seems that Not-Not theories of transcending culture and language are better suited in reference to the mental state of a writer prior to the creative act, and the reader's mental state when he is able to transcend surface linguistic meaning and his imaginative powers are able to operate freely as a result of that reading. Not-Not-ism is contradictory in regard to other aspects. No matter how much the writer prepares himself and is mentally able to "return to his origins" (huanyuan) (a mode of direct perception), if it only remains in the writer's head, it is not poetry. To become poetry it must pass through language (into the text itself). Simply commenting on content, as No-Not-ism does, is not to talk of art, but of experience. Only when there is commentary on form and art -as art, can true poetic criticism be said to have been made. Terms such as "direct perceptual thought" (zhijue siwei), "super-semantic thought" (chao yuyi siwei).  123 "non-determination" and so on, appear to refer to experience (the pre-creation mental state) alone and do not enter into the poetic text itself. Poets must pass through language and a text to express poetry, the first step toward reading appreciation must be language which requires a relatively fixed semantic thought process. This process is determined by the cultural nature of man and the basic cultural nature of language. An understanding of anything (poetry) can not be done with a blank mind (an aesthetic direct perception free of all hang-ups and obstructions) which passively receives what is presented to it, but is based upon a kind of a priori structure of consciousness (prior existence, prior perception, prior certainty) which in turn assists in the readers understanding and interpretation of the text. This prior structure naturally also includes specific cultural deposits within it. After readers have a fairly certain understanding and grasp of the basic semantic meanings of poetic language and of the entire composition itself, only then is it possible to set the imagination into further motion by using the prior structure of one's own consciousness, including direct aesthetic perception, to finally complete the poem. Given these apparent weaknesses and criticism from both underground poets and the establishment, it is hardly surprising that after two and one half years the poets of Not-Not would begin to drift apart. Yang Li was  124 considered the group's representative poet, but for the reasons stated above, even his verse was unable to attain the goals laid out by Not-Not-ism. As has already been seen, Zhou confined himself to satire and word games which sought to reveal the weakness of contemporary Chinese poetry and poets, and the difficulties a poet has in coming to grips with language and values which threaten to emasculate the poet's Self. In the spring of 1989, now without Lan Ma and Yang Li, Zhou felt he still had enough support from poets and poetry lovers to go it alone and continue to produce an underground journal. Ever aware that, given his family background, his position with regard to the authorities was precarious at best, Zhou had always made a point of not becoming involved in any overtly political activities. This was even more the case during April-May 1989 when demonstrations against CCP incompetence, corruption and dictatorship were sweeping the country. Zhou stayed well clear of the demonstrations which took place in Xichang. Finally, however, in late May, Zhou succumbed to his curiosity and went on what he termed a study tour of Chengdu and Beijing-. On June 4, he had already left Beijing and was on his way back to Sichuan. When he returned to Xichang, however, he found that Zhou Yaqin, his wife, had been arrested on June 5 and that their son was living with his grandparents. (On June 5, Yaqin had gone to market wearing a T-shirt upon which she had expressed with two written characters  .125 (aidao) her sorrow and indignation over what had occurred in Beijing and Chengdu. She was arrested that night and held without charges for two months.) Not long after his return, Zhou was informed by well-placed sources that the local police had begun an investigation into his activities. In early July, agents from the Ministry of State Security [Guojia anguanbu] began to follow Zhou and to photograph him together with acquaintances. Finally, on the night of August 18, ten days after the release of Yaqin from prison in Xichang, Zhou Lunyou was arrested. Initially, Zhou was held without charges and without visitors for six months in a Xichang prison. In February 1990, he was administratively sentenced to three years of labour reform at a prison camp tea plantation on the slopes of Mount Emei in northwest Sichuan, to be served retroactively from the time of Zhou's arrest. Zhou's alleged crime was the vague, ubiquitous charge of "inciting counter revolution" (shandong fangeming). Given that Zhou did not participate in any June Fourth-related political activities, his arrest was plainly an attempt by the authorities to once and for all eliminate Not-Not. (Of course, they were unaware of the split which had already occurred within the Not-Not camp.) Perhaps they considered its anarchic theories which both directly and indirectly struck at the cultural foundation the CCP had been attempting to establish since 1949, as somewhat of a threat  126 to the state. Certainly, its well-ordered, systematic appearance as an underground organization for a period of over three years must have been a source of embarrassment to the Sichuan literary establishment and the legal authorities. During his first six months in the prison camp, Zhou suffered terribly from overwork and undernourishment. During this period he developed dropsy (oedema). Eventually, Zhou Yaqin, who was now able to visit him, raised enough money to administer a bribe which resulted in Zhou being assigned work as a teacher in the camp. Yaqin was also able to smuggle books to Zhou. Ultimately, Zhou was released almost a full year early, in September 1991, ostensibly for good behavior. Throughout his ordeal, Zhou continued to write (or compose in his head and memorize) poetry. It appears that the extremity of his situation was the cause of a shift into a more lyrical style of writing. At the same time, however, his poems took on more direct political overtones. Two poems written while still in prison in Xichang during December 1989, are remarks on the continued freedom and power of the imagination while in physical captivity  ("The  Great Bird, of the Imagination" [Xiangxiang daniao], and "From the Concrete to the Abstract Bird" [Cong juti dao chouxiang de niao]):  The bird is a word, but also not a word Between books and the sky the bird is a sort of hinge  127 An imaginary shape. After breaking away from substance We are birds ourselves The final image emerging in a dream When birds are injured, fresh blood flows from our eyes When birds are silent, stones spread through our hearts In prison I write this poem With iron upon my body. My face feels The softness of feathers. I know Only a concrete bird can be caught and killed But a pure bird can't be Because that is merely a kind of abstract flight Not a bird flying, the sky The abstract bird is beyond all range of fire The abstract bird can not be shot dead After the crack of the gun The bird still flies"^^ It now seems that Zhou has come to a new appreciation of abstract language, or cultural symbols (as in "the abstract bird"), and the value of imagination in a confining, dangerous environment. Other poems prominently feature images of iron and steel, blood and stone, and are redolent with fear and contempt. As in "The Circumstances regarding an Arrangement of Stones"fShitou goutude jingkuangj: "This situation I have never before entered deeply into It takes violent hold of you. Atop a colossal stone Rocks containing iron pile up coldly And form into columns and walls You have been put between stones The north, or the south. You sit facing a wall Dully dreading the blue which seeps out of the silence This isn't some kind of game of the imagination At the cost of your life you are on the scene ^-^Appendix pp. #;i?|-^, #5?a.-5i>3.  128 For all of three years, you must accept these stones Become one component in this arrangement Only through murder can you experience that intensity Forcing itself in on all sides Compelling you to become small, smaller Until you skip into a stone and become a form of a thing Break into a stone and there's still a stone From wall to wall. B'rom the soul out to the eyes You have to love these stones, stone people And stoney things, love and be intimate with them Nod a greeting, sometimes the bumps will leave your head bleeding Heavier stones on top, occupy commanding positions You can't look up at them but can sense them at all times Always so indubitable and brutal They can smash your body to pieces at any time The circumstances of the arrangement of stones are like this Like the dangers to a person entering deeply into a tiger Pulling teeth in the tiger's mouth then suddenly a tooth aches Maybe one day you'll obtain a whole tiger skin Thereby proving your courage and riches But right now the tiger is biting you, eating you This non-substituteable plight has damaged you all over To penetrate a tiger and not be eaten by it To penetrate a stone and not become a stone To pass through burning brambles and still be your old self Requires perseverance. You must hold fast to yourself Just as the crystal holds fast to the transparency of the sky Thfe iron stones continue to pile up around you In the arrangement of stones you light a candle Illuminating each of your wounds more brightly"''^ Cold, inhumane indifference and enforced tolerance of inhumanity to man are recurrent themes. In the midst of  = ^Appendix pp. UU-^y,  #J9/  129 bloody thoughts, terror and pain, writing poetry becomes a reflexive exercise, an escape, a defense mechanism: "In the wound, in a drop of blood/We keep up our daily crystal exercises."^^ ("The Everlasting Wound" [Yongyuan de shangkou]) Tones of self-denigration are also never far from the surface, as in "The Image of the Tolerant" [Renzhe yixiang]:  The beauty of forbearance issues forth brilliance from the inner depths At crucial moments think of Han Xin And your conscience is set at ease the word tolerate is a knife in the heart The heart drips blood and still you talk and joke leefully Oh, the mighty Tolerantl"^* Under these circumstances and with the knowledge of the circumstances of other third generation poets Zhou penned what reads like an epitaph on the grave of this generation of poets in the wake of the June 4, 1989 killings in Beijing and Chengdu:  After passing over a thousand mountains and ten thousand rivers the third generation poets Are forging out true achievements Then suddenly they're shot down by a birding gun And become wonderful fragments of a tragedy Just as they successfully complete their magnanimous opus Bei Dao and Gu Cheng crossed the sea to join the ranks of the outsiders the third generation poets Remain in China and continue the war of resistance they learn silence ^Appendix pp. #;(?|-a.«, #589-5^0.  »pp. # ass  , *SX)-S9l.  .130 Learn to run away from home are heroes and cowards at the same time They learn to sit in jail cells express themselves vehemently in prison refuse to admit their guilt and repent They learn banishment learn to do hard labor their heads shaved bald They change their way of life under the hammer and sickle Zhou Lunyou served his sentence on the slopes of Mount Emei Liao Yiwu and Li Yawei Stood trial in Chongqing Shang Zhongmin wrote self-criticisms in Chengdu Yu Jian gave a name to a blackbird in Yunnan the third generation poets Scattered like monkeys when the tree fell in ten years time we'll judge the crimes and merits of these thousand autumns"^^ After his release from prison camp in September 1991, Zhou was reticent to turn his hand to poetry. He was emotionally drained by his experience and all too aware of his inability to continue to fight against the oppressive soul-grinding organs of the CCP. The final four lines of '"In a Mood to Detest Iron" [Yan tiede xinqing], written in October 1990, perhaps sum up his mood at the time:  After you've been scooped out Your whole body is dug down to dullness Before that night I lived as lightly as a goose feather After that night I awoke with a heart of dying . embers """ ^ Following his release Zhou did continue writing poetry, but it was of a very different nature from that which he had written before his arrest. In Deceihber 1991, Zhou wrote an essay, "The Posture of Refusal" [Jujuede zitai] (published in the 1992 ^Appendix pp. §310^3IS,  ""pp. n9f'2$Sf  *S9}-S9f.  UfiS^f.  131 spring/summer combined issue of the underground journal. Modern Han Poetry, which issued a call to China's poets of conscience to write poetry for poetry's sake, and to refuse all advances and enticements from the CCP's literary establishment. On the surface, Zhou seemed to be proposing a passive, detached poetic pose in the face of the state's tyranny. In the opening paragraph of his essay, Zhou offers an interpretation of "Motive V: The Salt of Refusal" from his 1986 poem, "Free Squares," stating that the opening four lines are now to be taken as a course of action: "When necessary learn to shake your head or wave your hand/If both your head and your hand are not free/You must learn silence/For this you practice fasting."^' In defense of himself in this new passive mode, Zhou states in "Thinking of Ourselves in the Fire of a Neighboring House" [Linzhai zhi huo zhong xiang women ziji], written in September 1991, in itself apparently a commentary on what had taken place a few weeks earlier in the former USSR, that the silence is a false one:  A ringlike fortress coldly surrounds us To know iron and steel is brutal, and To handle one's own life cautiously, this is not cowardly Follow Zhuangzi and be carefree, be the so-called spark Burning internally, this is precisely our true situation Stay low, until the crucial moment, and then tell all"^« In "Simulating the Language of the Mute" [Moni yayu], Zhou '"'Appendix pp. #0.6?, # $73 •  132 offers that speaking (writing poetry) and saying nothing has its own value:  The essential of exercising mute language is not speaking But getting ready to speak, it must be you who speaks out The iron-black nature of this century The sensation of metal is retained and flows in your blood It reminds you frequently and painfully The essential of mute language exercises is in speaking So as to avoid losing the ability to express through disuse "^^ But by March 1992, Zhou Lunyou had a radical change of heart. Now he must speak his mind, as he states in "The Hungry Years" [Ji'e zhi nian];  Everybody says you look strong and stout have a fairly rich life Until American handcuffs imported together with freedom of thought Are clapped on your hands then someone discovers Among the many rich and poor mouths crying out in hunger You are starved into becoming the most patriotic on the mountain You gnaw on roots of plants drink the north-east wind Come out with an altered physique more room in your stomach You leaf through unfinished poems and your entire body goes cold Sirtce coming into the world you've used the energy of a lifetime to write one poem And still you have not finished can't give up half way Take poverty as a prerequisite To be experienced (let others play about with Qigong and consumer ,goods) You tighten your belt persevere to the end with art "-'° ^'^Appendix p p .  *Q39-3LO>  #S'9^596.  .133 In "The Way of the Hand" [Shou de fangshi], Zhou turns away from his previous passive pose and adopts one more aggressive than that of Not-Not-ism ever was:  Or peal off your tense skin throw yourself Toward the light from behind armour plate Catch hold of the hand with no body temperature Let your blood flow smear it all over the palms In the final testimony of this century force it To leave behind a bloody print (Ending #2) There are always painful privacies in the game of compulsion You must act as if nothing has happened On an irregular chessboard Continue your match against the shapeless hand"~^^ It was also during this month that Zhou Lunyou resolved to revive Not-Not and begin preparing for the publication of its fifth edition. Of his own work he would publish "20 Poems on the Knife's Edge," a collection of poems written since his arrest in 1989. He had already made contact with a number of like-minded poets whose work would also be included; what remained was the writing of a manifesto that would serve to rededicate Not-Not to their cause: "RED WRITING —  The 1992  Arts Charter or the Principles of Not-Leisurely Poetry" [Hongse xiezuo —  1992 yishu xianzhang huo fei xianshi shige yuanze].  The old theories of Not-Not-ism were not entirely abandoned,'but a new Not-Not-ism, as in "not-leisurely," had taken priority over all others. The first paragraph of "Red Writing," written beneath the heading of "White Writing and Leisure" [Baise xiezuo yu xianshi], made Zhou Lunyou's ^^'Appendix pp. ii^S-ioj,  #5'?7->??.  134 meaning abundantly clear: "Chinese poetry has just undergone a period of White Writing, in unprecedented numbers and over a wide range of subjects, the feeble minded have written many words that have been forgotten as soon as they were read: cowardly, pallid literary works of an indifferent nature, lacking in creativity, and of pretentious superficial refinement. Defeated and scattered in all directions from the center of being. A dispersal without a core. Drifting, rootless words crowding and jostling against each other. In the guises of idle talk, hermits, hippies, ruffians endlessly trivial, insipid and empty. Deliberately avoiding the masters and their works, in fear of or without the courage to pursue profundity and power. Passing white turnips off as ivory tusks so as to avoid real and fabricated dangers. To the weak rhythms of elevator music, a generation of poets has formed into meandering rows and uses a limited vocabulary to repeatedly and collectively imitate one another and themselves. Persistent repetitiveness and inadequacy have made triviality and mediocrity the universal characteristics of an entire period of poetry "'^ Zhou Lunyou appears to be referring to the post-June 4, 1989 period, but he deliberately fails to be specific, for, in the eyes of some observers, this "period of White Writing" could be said to have begun in the mid-1980s (the rise of post-Misty poetry). His comments are not only directed at establishment poets, but also towards a surprising number of young, underground poets. Zhou points out an undertone of "leisureliness" which runs through much of the poetry of this period and finds it rooted in a nearuniversal aspiration for or actual enjoyment of the life of relative comfort and ease enjoyed by Confucian scholar-officials of old. Zhou sees China's poets traveling the middle road, the path of least resistance, avoiding all confrontation, and  -""Appendix pp. # ^jq-,  # 6?C'0 ''  135 interested only in mere self-preservation- They think no evil, and exhibit mild temperaments and elegant mediocrity in the majority of their work. Zhou goes on to lament the absolute absence of a truly critical consciousness and scepticism among China's poets. That which may once have existed in China's underground poetry is stripped away once this poetry is co-opted into the establishment literary mainstream. New styles and techniques are readily accepted in the establishment on condition that new, critical content is left behind in the underground journals and the privately printed collections of poets during their foolish, headstrong youth. Possibly during his two years in prison, Zhou recognized that he himself was guilty, if only to a lesser degree, of the sins he had accused others of. Not-Not-ism, while critical of poetic convention, linguistic order and traditional value systems, was still an obscure, round-about subversive maneuver, understood by few and, thus, easily dismissed as irrelevant. The events of June 1989, his subsequent personal experiences and, ultimately, the overthrow of similar totalitarian regimes in Eastern Europe and the former USSR convinced Zhou that literature has a direct political role to play in Chinese society (though not the traditional role in support of the regime, but in support of common humanity in general), that poets also have social responsibilities and that irrelevancy is the inevitable reward for poets who do not face up to them. Art  .136 for art's sake, when devoid of any direct relationship to the artist's society, is little more than self-centered, nihilistic expressionism. Zhou claims that Red Writing is a literature of freedom that will allow the human spirit to once again become pure and whole. It is a literature which will help to put an end to division and antagonism in Chinese society.  At this point, we want to offer our greatest respect to those fellow poets and writers in Eastern Europe and Russia who share with us the same values and beliefs (Solzhenitsyn, the Mandelstams, Brodski, Havel, Kundera, Milosz, etc.). From behind the Iron Curtain they spoke out unyieldingly and this led to the sudden demise of the mythology of the everlasting sacred order. Despite long periods of political oppression, imprisonment, exile and hard labour, they still held fast to mankind's universal values and ideals, and never wavered or ceased to write (Today we are reconsidering our situation and writing at the same point from where they set out). With rare courage and an indomitable spirit they saved themselves and went out from hell into a pure world. We still remain in a shadowed corner of the world, each day we must differentiate our shadows from out of the surrounding darkness. But at the same time, I believe: Fate is impartial. What they have experienced, we will experience. And furthermore, are experiencing. Starting from this very moment. Their today is our tomorrow! "-^^ Here, on the last page of "Red Writing," Zhou issues a direct challenge to the CCP cultural apparatus. The "red" in Red Writing does not stand for communism and its victory, but for blood, for the reinvigoration of all forms of writing, not just poetry, and ultimately for freedom  —  freedom of the spirit, of the imagination, of expression. The writings of Solzhenitsyn, Havel and Kundera, to name 'Appendix pp. # 3^3 , # ^ ( ^  137 but a few, are still banned in China. Only the non-political works of Brodski, Milosz and Osip Mandelstam, and so on, are available to the few Chinese readers with an interest in such literature today. Yet word of mouth and untranslated foreign texts have allowed knowledge of what has been banned to reach those who have an interest and who also wonder why it is that China has yet to produce even one writer or poet of equal courage, strength of character and moral purpose. While Zhou may exaggerate the influence of literature in the fall of foreign communist regimes, the aims of Red Writing go beyond literature and writers alone, they reach out to readers and Chinese society in general. In this sense the impact of literature is certainly greater than that of any one author: ".....Actually, my intention is a very simple one: To invigorate the pure fountainhead of your innermost being — a consciousness of the blood ties between the individual and the fate of all mankind; the vigorous enthusiasm created by true freedom; the satisfying actualization of a full and complete lifeJ A new century will soon be rung in. We stand on this side and look towards it. A great battle is taking place within us. The entire significance of Red Writing is to join in and fight it out to the end — to penetrate into all that is sacred or blasphemous in the arts, and to mount the final assault upon all the forbidden regions and ramparts of language. One day seventy-three years ago, Lenin's guard said to his woman: "We'll have bread, we'll have food, we'll have everything." Today, seventy-three years later, after having become sculpted historical reliefs, the Vladimir Ilyich's have been reduced to rubble. Now I will tell you that, aside from food, other things which have not been realized, will be: — There will be art — There will be freedom — There will be everything What but man's freedom does art hope to realize?  138 All things are temporary, only this eternal undertaking will not change. Red Writing believes this, and, furthermore, reaffirms: Art that is rooted in life is immortal. Having experienced calamity, young Chinese poets are testifying with their golden voices that during mankind's final efforts to free itself, the people of China will not give themselves up for lostl"~'^ Not-Not No. 5 was printed and went into circulation in the Fall of 1992. Also at that time, in response to Deng Xiaoping's apparent call to "counter leftism" (fan zuo), a number of literary conferences were organized in Beijing to attack continued leftist influence in the arts establishment. The first of these was a poetic theory conference which took place in Beijing on August 20-21. Zhou Lunyou was invited to attend and was able to present his as yet unpublished Red Writing manifesto. At the time, the manifesto received an enthusiastic response.-"' Subsequent events, or rather the lack of them, appeared to indicate that these conferences were just for show and primarily an effort by the CCP to placate disgruntled intellectuals. It now appears that Deng and his supporters used the anti-leftist tide to quell critics within the party in preparation for the CCP's Fourteenth Congress which was convened in November 1992. Shortly after the Congress was completed the second half of the slogan which Deng supposedly mouthed in January-February 1992 has been given added ^rarAppendix  pp. ^ Stf-^ , # ^ / 6 • =*^Acc«prding to letters from Tang Xiaodu wh9Was one of the principle organizers of the conference, and Zhou Lunyou himself.  139 emphasis: In its entirety the slogan read "Counter leftism, guard against rightism" (fan zuo, fang you). Here again we find shades of 1978-1979 when Deng used public opinion to remove Maoists and other "radicals" who opposed his policies of economic reform at that time. Criticism of leftism (in the person of doctrinaire Marxists, Stalinists, Maoists and anyone else opposed to Deng's policies) in 1992, however, was strictly limited to the CCP and certain intellectual and arts circles —  no doubt with  an eye to the events of the summer of 1989 and fear that a broader campaign might lead to calls for redress with regard to them. Zhou Lunyou has persevered in his crusade however. At last report he is hard at work producing and editing two editions of Not-Not, No. 6 and No. 7, for publication in the Fall of 1993. As with the third and fourth issues of the journal which were printed within days of each other in December 1988 and January 1989, one issue will be devoted entirely to prose essays and theoretical articles, and the other will be given over exclusively to poetry. Apparently Zhou is finding enough financial support to undertake this venture. It would also seem that he has found enough fellowtravellers to fill the journals' 250-300 pages with the work of quality which Zhou has always demanded for Not-Not. Zhou's own poetry will hopefully continue to mature. Prior to his arrest, Zhou's poetry had often appeared derivative and self-inflated, though without the Ginsbergian excesses and obviousness of some of Liao Yiwu's and Li Yawei's  140 work of that period. In the "Knife's Edge" pieces, however, the intelligence and integrity of Zhou's earlier work survive, and inform. The thrust of the "anti-rhetoric" and the less obvious, more sophisticated Western influences and reworking of Chinese poetic history also remain, but in more subtle forms. Zhou's efforts have, to some degree, been rewarded. During the spring and summer of 1993 a number of establishment literary journals have asked Zhou for permission to publish some of his work already published in Not-Not No. 5 and have also asked to publish new works. Chief among these publications was People's Literature which published four poems, including "Imagining the Great Bird," from "Twenty Poems Written on the Knife's Edge" in its June issue. ^*^ Despite the fact that Zhou's more political poetry has yet to be and probably never will be published in the establishment print media, the fact that his work, the work of a poet arrested on charges related to June Fourth, can now be published must offer encouragement to many other poets. The publication of Zhou's work might be taken as a sign that a liberal atmosphere is once more returning to the realm of serious art in China. Further evidence of this is the imminent publication of a six volume collection of Misty and post-Misty poetry entitled A Review of Contemporary Poetry Trends [Dangdai shige chaoliu huigu congshu], edited by Xie '^^Information based on recent correspondence with Zhou Yaqin. Zhou Lunyou has spent the months of July, August and September in Beijing preparing the next two editions of Not-Not and I have had to rely on his wife and Tang Xiaodu for information about his recent activities.  .141 Mian and Tang Xiaodu (planning had initially begun for this set of books prior to June Fourth). Also, Wan Xia, the former Macho Man poet, who like Li Yawei has become a writer of popular fiction since his release from prison in February 1992, has undertaken the task of financing and publishing an over 2,000 page volume entitled The Complete Collection of Post-Misty Poetry [Houmenglong guanjij.-" While in light of the number of volumes of third generation poetry published since 1987, the publication of these two sets of books does not appear to be remarkable, it should be pointed out that previous anthologies have suffered from the forced exclusion or inclusion of certain poets or works,^^ and from many editors lack of knowledge or access to China's underground poetry. Once again it appears that the arts have entered into the "''Based on information in a recent letter from Tang Xiaodu. The six volume set of books is due out in September, and Wan Xia's self-financed tome will appear before the end of the year. (As an aside. Tang's The Happy Dance of the Light Filament — Selections of Post-Misty Poetry was ready to go to press in June 3 989 [})e wrote the Forward I paraphrase from in Chapter I, in November 1988], but was not published until July 1992.) ^®Baf;ed on knowledge attained through personal communication with Tang Xiaodu, Zong Renfa and other similar individuals. For instance. Tang's first third generation anthology (the first published in China), Selections of Chinese Contemporary Experimental Poetry [Zhongguo dangdai shiyan shixuan], published by the Spring Winds Arts Publishing House fChunfeng wenyi chubanshe] of Shenyang in June 1987, was severely tampered with by the publishers after the final draft had already been approved for publication. This resulted in the publishing house substituting Liao Yiwu's "The Great Cycle" for "The City of Death" which Tang had originally selected, among.other similar alterations to Tang's original selections. Zong Renfa together with Author were prepared to go to press with a four volume collection of third generation poetry (including Liao's "Allahfaweh Trilogy" in its entirety) and theoretical essays in 1989, but the entire project was cancelled for political reasons.  142 liberal phase of the liberal-conservative cycle which has afflicted China since the advent of Deng Xiaoping's "opening" and "reform" policies in 1978. When the next CCP crackdown on domestic dissent and general unruliness occurs, it is a safe bet that Zhou and the few poets and writers who have had the courage to take up the challenge of Red Writing will once again be harshly dealt with. Since 1949, sooner or later all social forces which have refused to compromise and work together with the CCP have been crushed. Survival depends upon inconspicuousness and a corresponding political passivity. "Red Writing" is surely a wart on the complexion of the CCP's China which must eventually be removed. While "Red Writing" as a group of poets, and its publication, may not survive, perhaps its existence, no matter how brief, will encourage other poets and writers of courage and integrity to put thoughts to paper. The appearance of one group of poets like "Red Writing" hopefully presages the beginning of active literary resistance to the CCP's attempted dictatorship over thought and expression in years to come.  143 Chapter 5) CONCLUSION: UNDERGROUND POETRY IN CHINA  Underground poetry in China continues to exist in a world of shadows in which the CCP appears willing to allow it to survive. Clearly, the reason this situation is allowed to continue is primarily that this poetry is not seen as a direct threat to the state. Only during times of political repression, such as in 1987 and 1989, have underground poets been subject to aggressive campaigns directed against them. But even at their most repressive, these campaigns have had no obvious impact on underground poetry, at least not in terms of the number of poets involved and the number of publications they have produced. Instead, it has been economic pressures which have depleted the ranks of poets in general. Given the rapid commercialization and rampant corruption of Chinese society over the past five or so years, many poets or would-be poets have been drawn into the maelstrom and have taken advantage of opportunities to better their lives materially to the neglect of spiritual concerns. Just as in the West, idealism of any kind is scorned or deemed impractical by the majority of China's citizens. Fewer people look to poetry for solace, for the voice that speaks from the heart to the heart. The modern day opiate of the masses, the products of the mass entertainment industry and its media, has made large inroads (still guided by the CCP, however) and most people are  144 satisfied with the quick, superficial highs they are able to find there. Certainly, with a few noteworthy exceptions, China's underground poets have been more concerned in this thesis with the art of poetry than with the circumstances of their fellow countrymen or even that of themselves personally. Perhaps this is the reason why anthologies of Misty poetry sold so well until the late 1980s. Much of the early Misty poetry written by poets such as Bei Dao, Jiang He, Mang Ke, Shi Zhi and Yang Lian, was of an obviously political nature (to knowledgeable Chinese readers) which spoke to the hearts and experience not simply of other poets, but to many others born into a new age of scepticism and doubt, if not blatant cynicism, in the face of continued CCP dictatorship and repression after the CR. Younger poets and those who began their careers as poets after (and sometimes as a result of) the Misty poets have sought to raise the standards of modern Chinese poetry to those of the rest of the world. Of course, the "world" of poetry which most of them perceived was that which an increasing number of translations of twentieth century Western poetry brought to their attention. Necessarily, given CCP control over thought and expression, the tradition of poetry written under similarly oppressive conditions in Eastern Europe and the USSR, poetry written primarily as equipment for living for its readers as well as for its writers, the poetry of witness and of protest  145 against communist dictatorship, was not included among the works sanctioned for translation and publication. Instead, China's underground poetry became the realm of a modernizing avant garde during the mid-1980s, a poetry of unprecedented radical experimentation by Chinese standards. They shared the May Fourth spirit of totalistic iconoclasm, but to some degree their attacks were not so much on aspects of the classical tradition as on more recent, post-1949 "tradition" —  a "tradition" which, in many ways, was a far  more thorough-going renunciation of China's past than any other "renewal" movement in Chinese history. The post-CR renewal movement cannot be said to have been an altogether bad thing for modern Chinese poetry, just as China was attempting to enter the world's economic and political communities after the CR, poetry, and literature in general, also attempted to accomplish the same feat. However, the state was less ready for reform and modernization in the realm of literature and ideas than it was in the economy. This contradiction is the principal reason for the radical expansion of underground poetry activities during the 1980s. And, because it was underground, the experimentation that occurred was limited only by the imagination, knowledge and immediate physical circumstances of the poets involved. Almost without exception the principal influences upon these poets were translated poet,ry and poetic theory to which all had more or less equal access. If this eventually resulted in a state of apparent anarchy bordering on open warfare between  146 different poets —  few of whom truly acknowledged the poetic  influence or superiority of any native living (or dead) poet — it can only be regarded as the inevitable outcome of an almost unconscious rush to be seen as modern (not necessarily modernist), a rush to occupy vacant positions of authority within the realm of Chinese poetry which not so long before were not even perceived to exist. The Misty poets marked a break from the formerly unitary poetic practice, their decision to write the truth of their own personal experience and that of their generation necessitated a more political poetry, a poetry of self-empowerment in reaction to years of self-negation in poetry and society in general. By the mid-19&0s, a situation of two acknowledged (if not yet sanctioned in the case of Misty poetry) poetic styles had developed into a plurality of poetics, a symptom of a total disregard for and discounting of any and all authority wielded by the state's literary institutions and an intellectual freedom, in the underground, which allowed the individual poet to choose his aesthetic allegiances in accordance with his own intellectual and spiritual makeup. However, while a conscious modernizing and the great psychological pressures which that entailed as a result of the effort to rediscover the world of poetry in such a short time span were the most obvious characteristics of underground poetry at this time, success in this endeavor was severely retarded or warped by the fact of continuing political and new economic pressures upon the individual.  147 The evasive or escapist stance of many underground poets with regard to personal and national social realities, while being a political response in itself, also ensured that the audience for their poetry would shrink from that of an entire generation which had avidly read Misty poetry, to a limited (though still relatively large) audience of poets or would-be poets who were willing and able to decipher the various poetic devices and languages of the modernizing poets. Thus, it should come as no surprise to learn that many of the better, recent anthologies of "third generation" poetry have been published by university print houses or print houses which specialize in the serious arts. The work of the three poets dealt with in this paper is by no means "representative" of all third generation poetry. As the foregoing discussion would indicate, there are not, nor can there be any truly representative poets or poetry of this period (the 1980s). Depending on the reader's poetic predilections, they cannot be said to be any worse or better than others who established themselves as underground poets before 1989. However, it is the belief of this conunentator that these three poets have created works of lasting value, as have many other underground poets of the 1980s. (Such as Liao's "Allahfaweh Trilogy" and "The Master Craftsman," some of Li's post-1986 lyrics, and Zhou's post-June Fourth poetry.) Perhaps in time emotions will cool and less partisan eyes will allow a more honest appraisal of their work in China. For the time being, however, the task appears to be one of preservation of poets and poetry until that day.  148 However, an examination of their work over this period does give the interested reader an insight into how China's underground poets have dealt with modernizing, or renewal, and social-political pressures. Liao Yiwu is one of the very few poets who retreated out of the establishment where he had first made a name for himself and adopted the extreme modernist pose of rejection of all authority, a pose which ultimately took him outside of poetry and into the realm of politics. Liao has a gift of great imaginative power, but his knowledge of this talent and his desire to be avant garde ultimately resulted in a derivative tendency which culminated in the Ginsbergian howl which is "Slaughter." It is apparent that Liao not only wished to be modern, but that he also wished to be epic. He was not the only Chinese poet with this desire, but none pursued it as unceasingly as Liao, as witnessed by his long poems, "The Master Craftsman," "The Allahfahweh Trilogy," and "The Bastard Trilogy." "The Master Craftsman" and "The Allahfahweh Trilogy" were attempts to analyse and, ultimately, repudiate the entirety of China and its culture. Posing as poet-prophet, Liao painted a brutal picture of gloom and doom. He does deal with the realities of present-day China, however, and as such is more political than most underground poets. But his harsh, surrealistic imagery and language confuse or alienate most uninitiated readers. In "The Bastard Trilogy," Liao turns his attention to the abasement of language, poetry and contemporary Chinese society in general, pouring invective  149 and abuse upon all —  and, as always, upon himself, a self  which encapsulates all. Liao's poetry is the personalized form of a fallen society, a dying culture, and a language and poetry exhausted of all creative possibility. In a society shorn of hope and culture, Liao and his poetry survive as the "spawn of dogs," as do all others. There is much truth in what he says, but there are few who have the stamina and the patience to appreciate it. Just as few have the courage to face up to and admit the role they play in the tragic farce which is China today. Man must have hope to live and Liao allows none. His ambitions as a poet are great, but all too often his technique does not match the scope of his imagination. His work is bound together by inertia and despair, hardly centers of energy with the ability to draw most readers, however well prepared, into a poem and then pull them all the way through it. The one vague hope Liao does allow is that once everything has been destroyed, something new may rise up upon the ruins, like the phoenix. "The first movement is singing, A free voice, filling mountains and valleys. The first movement is joy. But it is taken away."-^ These lines written by Czeslaw Milosz seem to sum up the experience of both Liao Yiwu and Li Yawei. Liao's early poetry was driven by this natural impulse to sing of life, ^"The Poor Poet," Selected Poems (New York; Seabury Press,^ 1973), p. 53.  150 but by 1986 knowledge and experience had left him with a poetic impulse which found more exercise in cursing. For Li, however, the impulse to write poetry was quite simply taken away with his arrest in 1990. Li Yawei was just as much the outsider, the loner that Liao Yiwu was. He had no ambitions beyond poetry itself, beyond freedom of expression and imagination. He wanted nothing to do with the social realities of China; Li left those concerns to others. He cut a romantic figure, if a somewhat irresponsible one, as opposed to Liao's pose as a tragic hero (or anti-hero). Li is everyman, or is as everyman would be if he had the freedom that Li discovered in the imagination, in poetry, in life once he slipped the bonds of society. Perhaps inevitably, however, his freedom had a bitter edge to it because it was an empty pleasure in a world that is not free. It was no surprise that his poetic associates are imaginative figures and dead poets from Chinese traditional literature, and alcohol and remembered women. The present and the future hold nothing for him, only life itself and the poetry it produces has lasting value. Seduced into striking a blow against a state that would.destroy imagination, freedom and life, Li was finally captured and his strength to resist cooption appears to have been finally crushed. Li sought modern poetic forms that would suit his spirit, but was not averse to using themes and characters from China's poetic tradition —  for  151 that was where the soul-mates of his imagination lived. True, in 1987-1988, he did take a self-indulgent, fashionable post-modern approach to language, but even then he continued to write the shorter lyric poems which had succeeded in keeping for him the relatively large audience he had won for himself with flamboyant, anti-lyric verse between 1984-1986. When reality in its most brutal form (he like Liao and the others was beaten and tortured in a failed attempt to extort 'confessions') finally did pin him down, because of his previous poetic-imaginative flight from it, Li was ill-prepared and nearly defenseless against it. Yet there is reason to hope, once the wounds to his spirit have healed sufficiently, that Li will bring a matured intelligence and tempered (though not cowed) imagination back to poetry. The same could also be said about Liao Yiwu when he is released from captivity in 1994. Zhou Lunyou, obviously, is a different kettle of fish entirely. Perhaps because he is older than most other third generation poets and also has the benefit of greater experience and knowledge, his concern has always been as much with the intellectual integrity of man, in particular the individual, as with poetry per se. His understanding of the history of modern Western poetry and awareness of the developing nature of recent Chinese poetry (and also, perhaps, his own shortcomi<ngs as a poet), led J^hou to believe, in 1986, that a well-organized poetry underground could sustain a poetry "movement (yundong)" like that of the  152 Surrealists and Imagists earlier this century in Europe. Before 1989, the message of Not-Not-ism was more cultural than poetic, however, as it was heaviJy influenced by Western post-structuralist and deconstruction theory, such as Derrida's deconstruction, Roland Barthes' ideas about 'metalanguage,' Kristeva's about 'semiotic' elements, and so on. Many underground poets resented the political overtones of Not-Not, just as they resented his apparent desire to lead an underground poetry movement which many did not perceive to exist or were unwilling to admit existed. Though the poets of Not-Not differed greatly in style and technique, they appeared to represent an expression of the belief that there was strength and safety in numbers —  this might translate  into a larger audience and, ultimately, influence. In fact, the apparent size and success of Not-Not was the direct cause of Zhou's arrest in 1989. In turn, this resulted in Zhou refocusjng his attention upon himself and the experience of the individual living under oppressive dictatorship over thought and expression. Ultimately, in 1992, Zhou rededicated Not-Not and his own poetry to the political cause of human freedom. "Red Writing" restates in poetic terms the words of one of the greatest and most popular underground poets of them all, Czechoslovakia's Jaroslav Seifert, when, in 1956, after being partially rehabilitated during that country's brief de-Stalinization period, he proclaimed, "If an ordinary person is silent about the truth, it may be a tactical maneuver. If a writer is  153 silent, he is lying...."^ This is the spirit of true underground poetry, of the samizdat pubJications which literate men and women of conscience covertly read in Eastern Europe and the USSR before the dictatorship over thought was replaced by the dictatorship over the pocket-book. In China today both forms of dictatorship exist simultaneously. More and more it seems that there is a certain prestige in being an underground poet; the figure of the outsider, the ultimate refusenik has become even more romantic, but also more difficult to maintain. The aesthetic standards of the state's literary organs are still for the most part utilitarian. Serious literature is still a tool to be wielded over intellectuals (if not the "people" who don't read it anyway) and must meet the state's explicit and implicit requirements —  all of which assist in  the accumulation of cultural authority to the state and its aims. Underground poetry, on the other hand, is home to a multiplicity of aesthetic standards, many imported from the West, where a pure love of poetry and hatred of dictatorship or consumerism can coexist on an equal footing. Zhou's "Red Writing" is simply one of the most recent, and most  ^Josef Skvorecky, TaJkin' Moscow Blues (Toronto: Lester & Orpen Dennys Limited, 1988), p. 148.  154 dangerous, tendencies to enter upon the scene. Most dangerous not only in a political sense vis a vis the state, but also in the sense that this kind of poetry is accessible, in literary terms, to all who have experienced oppression at the hand of the state. While it may only be a matter of time before the other non-utilitarian aesthetic standards find varyj ng degrees of acceptance in the literary establishment, as has the majority of now dated Misty poetry, it now appears that a true underground aesthetic is beginning to take shape in China. In this sense, the slaughter on Tian'anmen Square occurred at an auspicious moment. China's young poets had been to school and learned modern poetry during the 1980s; now, having had cause to pause and reconsider their continued existence as poets and the idea of poetry in general, there seems reason to believe that a poetry of greater maturity and honesty may begin to flow from the pens of a growing number of China's underground poets.  155 POSTSCRIPT  If recent reports out of Hongkong are to be believed, another crackdown on the spread of "bourgeois liberalization" in the arts is about to get underway in China. According to one report,^ in June 1993 the CCP's central office and the propaganda department collated a collection of comments made by Ding Guangen, the politburo member responsible for culture and propaganda, and this document has since been circulated to related departments throughout China. Ding speaks of "two difficulties" {liang nan) in dealing with what he reportedly refers to as "the tide of bourgeois-liberal thought in literary art works" (zichan jieji ziyouhua sichao de wenxue yishu zuopin): One difficulty is that of ascertaining general standards with which to judge those works as a result of chaos in theory, thought and government policy, and international iniJuences; the second is that of carrying out policy guidelines in general. Ding goes on to promise that in the near future the central office would issue a document that would go some way to clear up the problem of Standards and policy implementation. Once works of obvious "bourgeois-liberal" -^Tian Zhen, "Wenyi chuangzuo de xin jinling" [New bans on artistic creation], Zhengming [Contention monthly], (Hongkong: August 3993), pp. 32-33.  156 ideological tendencies are discovered, they will not be allowed to be printed or, if already published, to be distributed. Those works already on sale will be ordered taken off the shelves. The individuals or organizations whose works contain "serious political mistakes" (yanzhong zhengzhj cuowu) and are printed, published and distributed privately, will be treated in the same way as those who produce pornographic materials: In other words, the perpetrators will be subjected to heavy economic sanctions so that they will serve as object lessons to others. Ding goes on to say, of course, that he does not want the leftist practices of the past repeated, by which lie appears to be implying that no one is to be arrested and sent to prisons or labour camps. The authors and publishers of works which only have serious political problems will be subjected to "administrative methods" (xingzhencj shouducm) cind "economic sanctions" (jingji zhicai) alone, and not "political dictatorship methods" (zhuanzheng shouduan). The administrative methods he refers to are those of forced resignation or being fired from government posts and positions at state-owned economic entities (a penalty that also often*leads to loss of housing, health care, education, denial of passports, and so on). If these reports are true, Zhou Lunyou and the editors of a number of other underground poetry journals and anthologies May soon be suffering the consequences of Ding's  157 efforts. Zhou, for one, might be subjected to an enormous fine which, given his inability to pay, might result in inprisonment in any case. (As mentioned earlier, Not-Not is a non-profit undertaking funded by donations from poets and poetry lovers. Zhou has no personal income aside from that of his wife and the small amounts he receives from the infrequent publication of his work in establishment journals.) The hope must be that this document and the following circular directive will be ignored like so many other central government directives today. Zhou's only hope would be that Xichang authorities and Sichuan's literary and law-enforcement authorities do not decide to make an example of him once again. Given that Zhou has spent the past three months near Beijing overseeing the publication of the two latest issues of Not-Not, he is probably well-aware of the situation. And, quite obviously, he does not care about the consequences of his actions. The coming weeks (or months, depending on how quickly copies of the journal come into their possession) will show just how much the authorities in Beijing and Sichuan "care" about Zhou and Not-Not.  October, 1993  158 Glossary for Chapter I (not including works listed in bibliographies)  y'S>~ ^i^ -7 y^  Jintian  shuhao  ft  Deng X i a o p i n g  ^f-M^ ^  zhishi  ^^  gingnian  Wusi yundong  if.^^  S^m ^^P  B e i Dao  d\L^  "Huida"  x^m  xinshi  *rTf  X i e Mian  n^f.  Guangroing r i b a o  *'iqg^  menglong  %.m  menglongshi  )tfe>f  minzu  ^7&.  Mao Zedong  -B ~}# $.  gong-nong-bing  Sun Shaozhen  Shu T i n g  ^  ^  -^)>'^5-t/^  159 Gu Cheng  ^ ^  S^  Jiang He  "^X '/^  Mang Ke  T Z -lli  Yang x.ian  f^  gingchu jingshen wuran  -;-|-1^ : ^ x ^ r ^ j,^  disandai shiren  / ^  A ^  ~JI^'-KS-  ^  y  f' — W nj y<dierci shichao  ''^ J=- > ^ > ^ " ^ ^  hou menglongshi  f^  xinshengdai  S.-JV (4 yfj^"'  f ^ ^  ^  Li Jinfa  ^ 4 . ^  Dai Wangshu  ~WK -^  Wang xiaoni  . -jr -I  shanghen wenxue  'J ^ ^^^ j ^ X .  Tang Xiaodu  ;J  ITT' •^/^  fi^  - ^  Han Dong  ^ ^  weida de gudian jingshen  ^ X ^  zouxiang shijie  " j ^ '\n) "P^ -^-  guoji shichang  ^ )|(^  j^j ^ : ^ 7 ^ t ^  ^J^-^^^\^  160 shijiezhuyi Tamen Wan Xia Ririxin Bai Hua Zhou Zhongling Yang Shunli Lei Mingchu Shi Guanghua  W '^-S^^ ^ ?.^  Liu Taiheng  ^J^f  Song Wei  t^  Song Qu  •^ 1 Zhang Yu Zhou Lunyou Xu Jingya  y^y^^^  it^^  gunti ^ - ^ ^  Xichuanti Xichuan  ^^i\  t^;il  1^  161 xin chuantongzhuyi Liao Yiwu ^^~ ouyang Jianghe Hu Yaobang Yi Lei  Yang xiaobin  #  (^p)3-:r->f  ^n W H ^?S 7 ^ >hJ^  panshi  ^3L& shunshi  ^# itt:  dunshi  Stir  qishi  #m  wanshi gishi  ^  ^tt >§> tit  Li Yawei  f :^lf  "Anling gu"  1-^  ^  162 Glossary for Chapter II  fanling guan  -:^4:^'L  Liu shahe  M -y-y sg-  Bai Hang  ti •'nt  Yan Li ^  *  Yu Jian  f [^  "Youguan da yanta"  ^^x/tff  Wang Yin  i t  Lu Yimin  iz 'th "Sk  Chen Oongdong  n%^  Haishang  i^-^  Niu Bo Daozj.  Sichuansheng qingnian shiren xiehui  / 3 / ! 1 - ^ ~ a ~ 5 - 1/^ /  shige yanjiu tuanti  >f f^ W  Dongfang wenhua yanjiu xiehui  ^  ^  X.^'^  ti^  3,  ^ ffl 1 ^ S ^  ' ^ t>t/^^  163 Zhengtizhuyi yanjiu xlehui  %1^±^^W'ZP7^^i^  Disandai ren tongmeng  ^y-1^^/?]^ ^-A  •Jieju huo kaishi"  Haizi Guo Lijia La xia  f m.  Axla baguo  E.1^  "Xunhuan zhu" Shige xuankan Zhili kaifa xiehui  Hanshou daxue hanshou zhongxin  '"n '^^_i^  Zhongguo dangdai shiyan shige yanjiushi ^  f^  Xiao Jun  /•J\ ^ ^  zhengtizhuyi  ^  Zhai Yongming  He Xiaozhu Gou Mingjun Yijing  '^? ^O^'^ ^ ^ \ 3 "p^ ^  >^;^ ^  ^  ^"^  -^^iM'^^/i'^^^  ^  164 Nuwa Alafawei  (^'""J t i  iZy/$(  yin-yang  xin shiqi fanling  f^T^^^^H ^ Z_  " X i e z a i s i c h e n g de menqian" Han Shaogong Xiao Kaiyu  ^ - ^ i ^ '^K £?55< 1^'^ \1 fl-il  -'P>' " ^ T'ji? ^ J3. ^  can Xue  yp^  tingzhi jiancha  ''i^JKP.  "Alafawei sanbuqu"  t^ /(^^^  P f f e ">^ ' ^ - ^ "^P ^"^7  "Manniuer de yinyue zhi jiu: shenxing yu wange" zong Renfa "Tusha sanbuqu"  ^  :^i—  _,..  ^  y^ ^  .:: - ^ B v ^  "Geyan" Li Bai  : ^ A)  Kongfuzi  ?i _i- ^  Zhuangzi  -J^  3^  '^i/P%^^'0'^^^~'^2-Jh.  "^f^itJ^'vmx  165 Mengzi  _^  ^  Laozi Mao Zedong yuluben  .^tij A i i g "  Xiang Yu Qu Yuan  €^ li-R  ^M  zhenzheng de n i ^AEI^^^'-^ Tailang Gangcun  J^tf f^H  Songjing ^ ^ ^ zhishi Ba T i e  fenzi  ^'n;':<^d^  Bfit  166  Glossary for Chapter  xungen shi Yang Li Er Mao  "Xiagu jiudian* Sun Erniang "Yu" giushou  ^ ^  ^  m  167  Glossary for Chapter IV  Zhou Lunzuo  J^4' \i-  laodong gaizao "Langgu"  ^ ^ ^ ^  Lan Ma  'S-i  •Feifeizhuyi xuanyan"  ^ f p - ^ p ^ ^ X . -2. 5  "Feifeizhuyi xiao cidian" Zhou Yaqin  "Feifeizhuyi yu chuangzuo huanyuan" ^ L ^ i . _ 2 ^ ^ -^ ^J"^ 1^.^^^!^ chuangzuo pipingfa xin jingshen wenming  /2,"iJ Y ^ f t t V ^ ^^'^i^ '^^f'^^^^'P'^X^^^  "Dongji yi: zishi sheji"  -^^ ph —  "Dongji wu: jujue zhi yan"  ^ / ^ ^ L - £ - ." "f £ i£i 2_ . ^  •Dongji liu: taxiti yi xi'  nj.inen huanyuan  ^ - yt^  •  ^"^y^yf  168 zhijue siwei chao yuyi siwei aidao  /.  Tb m<:}]^ - v ^ ^ g  169  Glossary for chapter v  ^^g yundong  170  Glossary for Postscript  Ding Guangen  "^ y^  $^  zichan jieji ziyouhua sichao de wenxue yishu zuopin  ^ _ ^ ^ ^ ^^_j^ ^ -a. ^ll5C'0 -ire? V ^  yanzhong zhengzhi cuowu  ^ y  xingzheng shouduan  -^ — j-/, _x -cv^*  jingji zhicai zhuanzheng shouduan  S^S^^j^^ ^ i'SCl-^^S^  171 CHRONOLOGICAL BIBLIOGRAPHY OF LIAO YIWU'S WORKS {Underground Journals)  1) "Maozi" ip^^ [The hat], Tonqdai \o]'f-^ i The same generation], (Lanzhou: 1984) pp. 2-5. 2) "Qinglu"ij^'|^ [The lover], Xiandai shi neibu jiaoliu ziliao [Modern poetry internal exchange materials]. (Chengdu: 1984) pp. 11-14. 3) "Jujiang: shangbu"gg;j:i^P [The master craftsman: part one], Zhonqquo danqdai shiyan shiqe [Contemporary Chinese experimental poetry], (Chengdu: 1985, Summer) pp. 1-8. 4) "Le tu"^Jt:. [The pleasure garden], Hanshi: ershi shiji biannian shi yX.T^' ^t^i('{^l^j!lf^ [Han poetry: twentieth century historical annals], (Chengdu: 1986, spring) pp. 31-35. 5) "Huangcheng"-^j.^  [Yellow City],  Bashu xiandai shiqun  E^^jPif-^'i^;^^ [Modernist poets of Sichuan], (Fuling: 1987, spring) pp. 7-12. Also: — "Chongfan jiayuan" jl'^^J^ preface), inside cover.  [Return home] (prose  - "Guanyu Liao Yiwu de sicheng" Stf^:ii:^^^tt^ [About Liao Yiwu's city of death] (prose essay), pp. 30-32. "^ "Lun yuanshi q i n g g a n " - ^ ^ ^ »f4^^^ [About primitive feelings] (prose essay), pp. 33-35.  Bibliography; Liao (establishment literary journals) 1) "Yne"i/:j  [Appointment], "Al Wa sun de ren" P^a*  ^^^b^A^  172 [Heyl Bamboo-shoot digger], Sichuan wenxue yuekan f^/lj-j-iS [Sichuan literature monthly], (Chengdu: September 1982), pp. 69-70. 2) "Wo he erzi zhan zai anshang" ^f»/|jf i,fe'^^J=. [I and my son stand on the riverbank], Sichuan wenxue yuekan tl^^ljt'^ [Sichuan literature monthly], (Chengdu; January 1983), p. 56. 3) "Dao yiwei shiren"i):^-f£.;^^ [Mourning a poet], Shanquan wenxue yuekan a*^ •g'^^f-ij [Mountain spring literature monthly], (Kunming: May 1983), pp. 37-38. 4) "Zuihou yici":j|:7^-^ [The last time], Shikan if-f^J [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: February 1984), p. 10. 5) "Da pendi";^'^t(5 [The great basin], "Da gaoyuan" ;/Cfey^ [The high plateau], "Shenmi shu";?:i^^i5?^ [Tree of mystery], Shikanj^^tj [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: August 1984), pp. 27-30. 6) "Guisu"i3!f§ [The place you belong], Q i u s u o ^ # [Search] (newspaper format), (No. 1, 1985), p. 1. 7) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi yi" '•^iM.'^-.dJ^-^^ ^t^^li^" [Manuel's music — notes on art no. 1], Baquo wenfenq ^j'^XlRi ^'^^^ literary wind of ba country] (journal published twice annually), (Fuling: June 1985, No. 1), pp. 66-69. 8) "Renmin"A^ [The people], Qinqnian wenxue yuekan -^-^X'^ J^ftJ [Youth literature monthly], (Beijing: June 1985), pp. 67-69. 9) "Manniuer de yinyue —  yishu zhaji zhi er" "^IS-^d^-^^^  173 [Manuel's music — notes on art no. 2], Baguo wenfenq 2lS-3lP^ [The literary wind of ba country], (Fuling: January 1986, No. 1), pp. 43-46. 10) "Da xunhuan - shang'j;^fe'j;jyj-^ [The great cycle - part one ], Caoyuan wenxue yuekan M-M. SC^m ^'] [The plains literary monthly], (Huhehot: February 1986), pp. 67-69. 11) "Dadi zhi men";t:it3i.i1 [The gate to the earth], Changkn shibao-j^^ ^f^ [The chan^n poetry paper], (Xi'an; No. 3, 1986), p. 1. 12) "Zai liangge mengjing zhi jian" ^(^'^P'^t^ £-lfl] [Between two dream-scapes], "Women huanyuan yu shijie"^"};^ [We go back to our origins in the world], "Shen Txao" '>^ [An exchange of spirits], Zhongguo wenxue yuekan l^lsjjzi*^ ^f^'J [China literature monthly], (Beijing: June 1986), pp. 27-28. 13) "Gonggala gaoyuan" '^^^i^MJ^ [The gonggala high plateau], Qinqnian wenxue yuekan - ^ ^ ^ ^ i^ft) [Youth literature monthly], (Beijing: July 1986), pp. 67-69. 14) "Xiandai shishixing zhiyi" S^X^^y^'ftt^^ [Questions about the epic nature of modern poetry] (prose essay), Pinqlun xuankan i^i^j^f-\\ [Criticism selections monthly], (July, 1986), pp. 61-62. 15) "Bashu .xiandaizhuyi sixiang" QW) ^pA^\,iJc P"^ [Modernist thought in Sichuan] (prose essay), Shige bao y^^-^L. [The poetry press], (Hefei: August 21, 1986), p. 1. 16) "Da xunhuan xia" X ^ ^ ^ / T [1!he great cycle — part two], Caoyuan wenxue yuekan ^ 7 ^ ^^i 0 4^)  174 [The plains literature monthly], (Huhehot: October 1986), pp. 68-70. 17) "Qinglu"/|^-j'^ [The lover], Zhongguo wenxue yuekan '^\il±.'X jg^ij [China literature monthly], (Beijing: October 1986), pp. 35-38. — "Xinde chuantong — bashu xiandai shiqun juantou yu" ^^hUiit> —^'^S^ ft i^^  ^  ^  it  [The new  tradition -- preface to the modern poets of sichuan] (prose essay), p. 128. 18) '•Qingru"'j-|:-J'^ [The lover], Shige bao v^?>:f^ [The poetry press], (Hefei: October 21, 1986), p. 3. — "Xinchuantongzhuyi xuanyan" ^y^i^^3<^ "^"^ [The new traditionalism manifesto] (prose essay), p. 3. 19) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi er" *XlE^ >^^~B^ %i^Pji&i. =• [Manuel's music — notes on art, no. 2 ] , Shi j ^ [Poetry], (Fuzhou: 1986), pp. 129-134. 20) "Ai de meng"^gpi>'^ [Love's dream], "Shuimian" S$ d^ [Sleep], "Shenru"^^^ [Deep entry], Shikan i^9\\ [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: January 1987), pp. 21-22. 21) "Sicheng"^J5^ [The city of death], Renmin wenxue yuekan A 0^^^ ^ -pil [People's literature monthly], (Beijing: January/February 1987), pp. 58-62. 22) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi si" '^'^S^(^"9'^Tyk "^-^LvdiCE? [Manuel's music — notes on art no. 4 ] , Huiguidai '^jSe^ [The tropics] (poetry newspaper), (January 1987), p. 4. 23) "Heiye, muqin huo xiaobang zoumingqu" i^J^ ^'^ S^ ^fPM^^ [Night, mother or a chopin sonata], Xingxing shikan (g^ •\XfA [Stars poetry monthly], (Chengdu: June 1988), pp. 27-28.  175 24) "Huangcheng'"^/:^ [The city of yellow], Zuojia wenxue yuekan H^^xf^F^T*! [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: February 1989), pp. 28-31. 25) "Dapendi, wo de baomu" JZ^t^ f^^^-^^^ fThe great basin, my childhood nurse], Shikany^-fij [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: March 1989), pp. 21-22. 26) "Changlang"-]^^^ [The long corridor], Shanghai wenxue yuekan JZ->^X.^^f^\ [Shanghai literature monthly], (Shanghai: March 1989), pp. 53-54. 27) "Xianfeng shige siren tan"^^^^^-gjyc^-^ [A four-way conversation about avant-garde poetry] (with Li Yawei, Gou Mingjun and Ba Tie), Zuojia wenxue yuekan 'i^'^jC^ ^f"*} [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: July 1989), pp. 66-75. 28) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi ba" '%i^sJf^"^^"^"^ ^:^*(ji6i/V [Manuel' s music — notes on art no. 8 ] , Zuojia wenxue yuekan ^ " ^ - ^ " ^ y ^ "-fO [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: September 1989), pp. 27-30, 29) "Chuidizhe" o ^ ^ - ^ [The flutist], Shikan j^^f;) [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: April 1990), pp. 35-36.  Bibliography: Liao (Published anthologies and collections) 1) "Yueguo zheipian shenql de dadi" i^^J^j{j^f^i^'? :Ki^ [Pass over this mystical earth], Xinshichao shiji -^ffiSii^ ir^'S^ [A new poetry tide poetry collection] (volume 2 ) , Beijing: Beijing daxue siwu wenxue she i t ^ T f ? iTCLfc "^"x ;?±. January 1985, pp. 754-758.  176 2) "Yueguo zheipian shenqi de dadi" ^ i t ^i4j ^'f"^^^/^ * ^ [Pass over this mystical earth], "Xingxing: yige piaoshi de dalu"/^/^; _/p'^^i^^ ;t piA [Star: a twinkling continent], "Dunhuang: yige yishu liupai de chansheng" "^^^^ J —''T^if^^^^ ^^f^'£ [Dunhuang: the birth of a school of art], Dangdai qingnian shuqingshi sanbaishou "Sf-^-^^^T*!^ v ^ 5- Ih'^ [Three hundred lyric poems by contemporary youth] (volume 1), Guiyang: Guizhou renmin chubanshe "^-^fj /^.^ JtJ iil^^i. May 1985, pp. 173-182. 3) "Dapendi":^'^ttS» [The great basin], "Dagaoyuan" :^f^>5 [The high plateau], Tansuo shiji ^ ' " ^ i ^ ^ f^ collection of exploratory poetry], Shanghai: Shanghai wenyi chubanshe JLZ->^ ^^SS^fife^-i. i August 1986, pp. 237-241. 4) "Da xunhuan" ]^v/f]f^^-  [The great cycle], Zhongguo dangdai  shiyan shixuan ^^^-^iK^Jf^ I'^M^ ^^ selection of Chinese contemporary experimental poetry], Shenyang: Chunfeng wenyi chubanshe r^/j^j^l'^ iC. ^Ife-fir June 1987, pp. 147-152. 5) "Yuyue"f^^ [Transcending], "Zhongdian" i^M[Destination], "Qidaozhe"^'fr;^:^-^ [The supplicant], "Minghun"^^'^ [Dark marriage], "Songge"'^^ [Ode], Sanwenshi de xinshengdai -^^:^"i^^^ ^fJT^'Hl [Prose poetry's new born generation], Yinchuan: Ningxia renmin chubanshe "^ M / v ^ ifcZ*^/?*-^ ' October 1987, pp. 126-129. 6) "Dadi zhi men" '^i(Bi.\'] [The earth's gate], "Jingji niao ^ J ^ 4 [The thornbird (2)], "Yibu zhi yao" — 7 - ^ - ^ [The distance of one step], "Qidaozhe";?^;^-^ [The supplicant], "Minghun"^-^g [Dark marriage], Shinian sanwenshi xuan Y-^^j^cXS^i^ ^^ collection of the ten  177 year's prose poetry], Beijing: Zuojia chubanshe ^^$fi.^ December 1987, pp. 462-466.  fiis^^  7) "Shuidao meiyou zhongduan" P^^^^'^^jf [The waterway has not broken off], 1986 nian shixuan I'^g^'-^ v^i^ fl986 poetry selections], Beijing: Renmin wenxue chubanshe y^$^^^±\^^-i. i February 1988, pp. 51-52. 8) "Mingmu jingting wuyun paiji ni de baifa" I^Q-^^off^^Z^.'^SA •^if-i^^^^ [Close your eyes and quietly listen to the black clouds strike your white hair], Dangdai sanwenshi xuan ^'^'^iCkj^^'^i. [A collection of contemporary prose poetry], Shenyang: Chunfeng wenyi chubanshe :^''J^yC^ji±l^^^^^ ,June 1988, p. 338. 9) "Dapendi";?^:^ t ^ [The great basin], Saodong de shishen; xiknghap shige xuanping) ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ > f ^ > ^ ; ^ffvf-^ i^f€^i^ "V^ [The restless muse: selections and appraisals of new tide poetry], Shijiazhuang: Huashan wenyi chubanshe /'^tUJl^^t^isi^X, September 1988, pp. 388-391. 10) "Geyao-^T^ [Folksong], "Xinchantongzhuyi" ^ ^ f f i ^ ^ ^ [New traditionalism] (prose essay), Zhonqguo xiandaizhuyi shiqun daguan 1986-198J ^\%lf^^±Jt^ if-^ ^x'^ [The grand exhibition of Chinese modernist poets 19861988], Shanghai: Tongji daxue chubanshe ]'^-^-A'^ iii^tfkjfdl September 1988, pp. 144-149. 11) "Jujiang: shangbu" H-^t. * S-^'^ [The master craftsman: part one], Disandai shiren tansuoshi xuan '^^{^\)^J^j^'^ j^J^ [A selection of third generation poets' exploratory poetry], Beijing: Zhongguo wenlian chubangongsi ff^:fc?^ie/^-^/X^ December 1988, pp. 171-187. 12) "Dapendi" ;;;;(;3^-^ [The great basin], Menglongshi minqpian  178 jianshang cidian ^ ^ >|-^ (g J J ' ^ ^ | ^ t An appreciation dictionary of famous Misty poems], Xi'an: Shaanxi shifan daxue chubanshe j^'•'^'1 ^>^ 7t^ jjl M<7 2.1_ / December 1988), pp. 213-218. 13) "Da xunhuan"j;^;;ff]'^^v [The great cycle], Zhongguo gingnian xinshichao daxuan f\h!-^^^i^iff\yt^ [The large collection of Chinese youth's new poetry tide], Xi'an: Zhongguo xinshi wenku chuban zhongxin 1'lSif>f'i:^it^t''^V'^®'^®"'^^'^ ^^^^'  PP* 355-361.  14) "Juebie" >^-!^ij [The parting], 1987 nian shixuan [1987 poetry selection], Beijing: Renmin wenxue chubanshe A^t^S^^ it\/t/k.?'-£. / April 1989, pp. 399-400. 15) "Wo weishenmo tongku" i^Y^'^f'^jf^l!^ (why do I cry], "Ni de yaolanli shushuizhe yige si haizi" ' ^ ^ ^ ^ S ^ ^ ^S^tS"—^j^feiJ^V^'^ dead child is sleeping in your cradle], Daohuozhe ^ ^ ^ [Thieves of fire], Beijing: Zhongguo wenlian chuban gongsi "^l^ jc^s.ip^^t'^'^^ June 1989, pp. 26-27. 16) "Sicheng"<^f>^ [The city of death], Zhongguo tansuoshi jianshang cidian '^^^'^y^i^i^^M [An appreciation dictionary of Chinese exploratory poetry], Shijiazhuang: Hebei renmin chubanshe V^^ A^^ iii J^f-JL / August 1989, pp. 496-502. 17) "Qinglii" ij=|^g, [The lover], Menglongshi hou — Zhongguo xianfeng shixuan ^ ^ y^f^ — f\$\ - ^ f ^ ^ ^ [After Misty poetry — a selection of Chinese avant-garde poetry], Tianjin: Nankai daxue chubanshe ^-ff X^ i^tthi-Z. January 1990, pp. 46-52^  179 18) "Baima: zushi xuan er" ^ ^ i a v ^ ^ ~ [White horse: cycle poem, two selections], Miluan de xinqkonq j^-^jy ^ ^ ^ ^ [The infatuated starry sky], Guangzhou: Huacheng chubanshe y(^P^iii)j^^±. > August 1991, pp. 78-82. 19) "Sicheng"^ tJ^ [The city of death], Denqxinronq xinqfu de w u d a o — hou menqlonqshi xuancui tj ^^'i^'^^-^^t^'p^l^ — £ i ^ J^'^'i^'^^ fPJ^® happy dance of the light filament — a selection of post-Misty poetry], Beijing shifan daxue chubanshe ib^i|»pj£>;/;'|f ib ^ , July 1992, pp. 89-96.  Bibliography: Liao (unpublished or partially published works: mimeographs and manuscripts)  1) "Wo weishenmo tongku" 7 pages.  ^)Vff''^^^^  [Why do I cry],  2) "Jin feicui"-^||M [Golden jade], 14 pages. 3) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi san" * ^ ^ ^ l ^ ^ ^ *Zi.i"^LiTfi:L S. [Manuel's music — notes on art no. 3 ] , 9 pages. 4) "Jujiang ( w u b u ) " ^ ^ L&r^y [The master craftsman (five parts)], 1985-1987, 59 pages. 5) "Bai ma". ] ^ ^  [White horse], 1986, 13 pages.  6) "Sicheng"^ ^ j ^ 7) "Huancheng"^7l^ pages.  [The city of death], 1986, 16 pages. [The city of illusions], 1987-1988, 12  180 8) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi jiu" ^^^'^&^-^^ [Manuel's music — notes on art no. 9 ] , 1988, 8 pages. 9) "Gei dangdai shitan yi erguang" i^^i^i^t^—.^M^ [Giving the contemporary poetry scene a slap] (together with Li Yawei and Xiao Kaiyu), 1988, 5 pages. 10) "Zazhong-^^J^ [Bastards], April 1988, 19 pages. 11) "Ouxiang"'j'j^^ [Idols], August 1988, 25 pages. 12) "Manniuer de yinyue — yishu zhaji zhi shi" ^^^^y'%^^ [Manuel's music — notes on art no. 10], 1989, 8 pages. 13) "Tusha'^-4;  [Slaughter], May-June 1989, 14 pages.  181 CHRONOLOGICAL BIBLIOGRAPHY OF LI YAWEI^S WORKS (Underground Journals)  1) "Wo Shi zhongguo" i:)(:4'f'l5] [I am China], "Yinghanmen" ^^•vR.'fi"^ [Hard men], Manghan^yz. [Macho man], (Chengdu: December 1984), pp. 1-8. 2) "Yinghanmen"^^,)5^1l^  [Hard men], "Wo shi zhongguo"  •4^u^i:|ijg [I am China], Xiandai shi neibu jiaoliu ziliao ^^j^-^ifS^'^f'^l^^^^ fModern poetry internal exchange materials], (Chengdu: January 1985), pp. 48-49. 3) "Laozhang he zhetian bieri de aiqing"^^^^^Ji.^QI^'X'ti' [Old Zhang and a suffocating love], "Su Dongpo he ta de pengyoumen"vJ$>^^^^»^&^(^^^i^ [Su Dongpo and his friends], "Shenghuo"-^l^S [Life], "Xingqitian"/g|)^^ [Sunday], "Nuyou"-^^ [Girlfriend], "Qizi"^^- [Wife], Zhongguo danqdai shiyan shige ^\z}^^^:^\^^>L [Chinese contemporary experimental poetry], (Fuling: July 1985), pp. 22-24. 4) "Chuangdang jianghu: yijiubaliu" )-l]>^vXv^J [Wandering through the country: 1986], Hanshi: shiji biannian shi — 1986 <yZ. vf-; ^ t i ^ \ ^ [Han poetry: 20th century chronicles — 1986], spring 1986), pp. 84-85.  ~'/h./\.t'x ershi i^^jti^ (Chengdu:  5) "Gaoerji jingguo jiyibieke zhen" ^ ^ i i ^ ^ i ^ ' ^ i ^ ^ ' l ^ ,^^ [Gorki passing through Zhybiek town], "Shiba sui" " j " / ^ ^ [Eighteen years old], "Youqing"^^'/^ [Friendship], "Luyou zhaopian" ; ^ f ^ g ^ / ^ [Travel pictures], Feifei iii :^fe. [Not-Not, no. 1 ] , (Xichang - Chengdu: May 1986), pp. 42-43 6) "Yinghanmen" ^^JZ-'fj^J  [Hard men], "Zhongwenxi"  ^^"^  182 [The Chinese department], "Shenghuo" ^•;:^ [Life], "Gei weihunqi yifeng xin"^;^^t'_$_ i^^-f« [A letter for the fiance], "Biye fenpei" b ^ ^ / ^ ^g^f^ [Graduation work-assignment], "Gengnianqi" ^^E^^ [Menopause], "Laozhang he zhetian bieri de aiging" :^ ffe ^'•^^ 0 ^ H &^'Mjf'^ f01<^ Zhang and suffocating love], "Su Dongpo he ta de pengyoumen" [Su Dongpo and his friends], "Xingqitian""xf^^ [Sunday], "Shiba sui"-fV\.^ [Eighteen years old], "Gaoerji jingguo jiyibieke zhen" f C - ^ ^ ^ ^ - ^ f'f^^'illj f Gorki passing through Zhybiek town], "Nianling bu rao ren"^2^^^ '^^>^A_ [The years are merciless], "Wo de fuzi shenyin" '^f^y^^^^P'^ [My axe is sighing], "Ni shi yige hao guniang" "^^^—'T^S'^^^k [You're a good girl], Manq Han: 1984 - 1985 shi xuan — Li Yawei ^-^JL: •~iLy\.^—AJ^\^<^/^Sd^ [Macho man: 1984 - 1985 poetry selections — Li Yawei], (1986), pp. 1-34. 7) "Hao han'j^J_j.jt. [The good man], "Gudai pengyou" "^iX^^^ [An ancient friend], "Gengnianqi" •^M-^1^ [Menopause], "Siyue de youyu" \^^^^ij^^p [April worries], "Nianling bu rao ren" ^ ^ ' | ' f - ^ > C [Age is unforgiving], Bashu xiandai shiqunfig'-^ V^A'^'V^^>^ [The modernist poets of Sichuan], (Fuling: Spring 1987), pp. 13-15. Also: — "Manghan shouduan" ^^T-^'P^ [Macho man methods] (prose essay), pp. 46-50, 53. 8) "Wo he ni" ^^'^'f^ [Me and you], "Jiu zhi lu" v/^-i,^^ [Wine road], "Juedou"j^ip [Duel], Feifei dier hao ^f^^s^^ [Not-Not no. 2 ] , (Xichang-Chengdu: May 1987), pp. 35-41. 9) "Feixing"^^j- [The flight], "Women "^'IJ":] [We], Xiandai hanshi •f!Z.'VXyT^y^' [Modern han poetry], (Beijing: Suiraner 1991), pp. 21-26.  183 Bibliography: Li (establishment literary journals)  1) "Qiongtu"'^i£^[The endless road], Baquo wenfenq 'QWiJcI^ [The literary wind of Ba country] (published twice annually), (Fuling: no. 1, summer 1985), pp. 34-35. 2) "Manghu" " J ^ [The blind tiger], "Kunshou"/^-^ [The cornered beast], Baguo wenfeng tSj^;^jl>^ [The literary wind of Ba country], (Fuling: January 1986, no. 1), pp. 18-21. 3) "Yinghanmen"-^^y}2'[/"^ [The hard men], Guandong wenxue yuekan ^^^'^J^'f'J [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan: April 1986). 4) "Kunshou"/i^-^ [The cornered beast], Zhonqquo wenxue yuekan 'f*')^]^*^ ^-^ij [China literature monthly], (Beijing: October 1986), pp. 43-44. 5) "Zhongwenxi" *^^ ^ [The Chinese department], Shige bao " V ^ ^ ^ l ^ [The poetry press], (Hefei; October 21, 1986), p. 2. Also: — "Manghan xuanyan" ^ i ^ ^ - ^ ^ S ^ [The macho man manifesto] (prose essay), p. 2. 6) "Gaoerji jingguo jiyibieke zhen" Jr?-^-^ t ^ ^ '^'i^^\^^M^ [Gorki passing through Zhybiek town], "Shiba sui" -f"/V *j [Eighteen], "Youqing" :'^'I'-f" [Friendship], "Luyou ; . '^ zhaopian " ^Ji' }{ [Travel pictures], Zuojia wenxue yuekan "ffe^-t; :fc'^ J^-f »J [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: February 1987), pp. 43-44. 7) "Jiu zhi lu" > ^ i ^ ^ [wine road], "Yezhuo"xj|^^t; [Drinking at night], "Huijia"}^^ [Going home], "Gudai pengyou";^f^]^^  184 [An ancient friend], Guandong wenxue yuekan [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan: April 1987), pp. 43-44.  _^^J^^^f'll  8) "Zai huanghun" 7j2r|'§ [At dusk], "Shijie yongji" "ffc^l"^ f;^ [Crowded world], "Wuyue bahao riji"S^/Vr^H.>^ [May eighth diary], "Tingyuan zhi zhong"^^^^i_*1^ [In the middle of the courtyard], "Nanfang de rizi" r^^l^s?l3%[Days in the south], Guandong wenxue yuekan ^^X-^R^^^ [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan: June 1987), pp. 8-10. Also: —  "Manghan shouduan" ^ ' X ' ^ ' ] ^ (prose essay), pp. 39-42.  [Macho man methods]  9) "Shijie yongji" t ^ ^ - ^ ^ [Crowded world], " Y e z h u o " / ^ ^ [Drinking at night], "Jiuliao"7^^^|7 [idle words while drinking], "Jiumian"J,|^^^ [Drunken stupor], "Jiudian"> [The inn], "Wo zhanzhe de s h i h o u " ^ g ^ ^ , ^ 3:f fl^c [While I was standing], " H u i j i a " f ^ ^ [Going home], Zuojia wenxue yuekan '^ f c ^ jtjJf^ f-tj [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: April 1988), pp. 38-40. 10) "Dao" ^ [The island], "Ludi" jS'^fElj [The continent], Guandong wenxue yuekan ^ ^ ^ ' ^ J^-^^] [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan: April 1988), pp. 4-10. Also: ~  "Wo d u ^ h i de yixie kanfa"  ^7^>^ii^  -'^'^^'t.  [Some of my opinions on poetry] (prose essay), p. 4. 11) "He" y'fij [The river], Shanghai wenxue yuekan hy^f^^M^] [Shanghai literature monthly], (Shanghai: March 1989), p. 55. 12) "Kuangpeng" ^£.^>§  [A wild friend], "Guailu" lf-:i.-f^ [A  strange companion], "Meiren"Xx». fA beautiful woman].  185 "Zhanzheng"Jp^S- [War], Huachenq wenxue shuanqyuekan ^P^yf^^^^^l^:fi^ [Flower city literature bi-monthly], (Guangzhou: no. 4, 1989), pp. 189-190. 13) "Meinli he baoma" ^-^ ^'^ '^3} [A beautiful woman and a precious horse], "Yaohua" ^^^Ij^ [Demon flower], "Xiari de hongzao" The red date of summer], "Dongdu"^>^ [The eastern ferry-crossing], "Mengbian de si" - ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ [Death by dream-side], "Shenbei" v'p.i::;7> [The deep cup], "Yuanhai"|^ yg- [The distant sea], "Duchuan"^;5^o [The ferry], "Haose"^J§ [Sex-crazed], "E de shi"^i^^i^ [Poetry of hunger], "Zuijiu" f^^'^]^ [Drunk], "Xuelu":^^^ [Road of blood], "Posui de n u z i " ^ ^ ^ ^•^3" f^^® shattered woman], Zuojia wenxue yuekan i'f$<^^^j^-f^] [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: July 1989), pp. 12-17. Also: — "Huojiangzhe de hua" ^'^'^^'p >^ [Words from the prize-winners] (prose essay), p. 74. ~ "Xianfeng shige siren tan" ^ f i ' ^ I F ^ f^ ^ "^X. [A four-way conversation about avant-garde poetry] (with Liao Yiwu, Gou Mingjun and Ba Tie), pp. 66-75. 14) "Posui de nuzi j^ [The shattered woman], "Xiao meiren"ijv^^/;_ [The little beauty], "Yuanhai"^^ [The distant sea], "Yixiang nfizi's^^^;^ [The woman from a foreign land], "Neixin de huawen" [^ 4 ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ [Decorative patterns of the heart], Huachenq wenxue shuanqyuekan ^1^X^9AI^^] [Flower city literature bi-monthly], (Guangzhou: no. 1, 1990), pp. 123-124. Also: — "Yige nuhai keneng xiang zheiyang likai women" -^P^S'^'Pi^^c^-^E^f'^l^^^ girl probably left us like this] (prose piece), p. 122.  186 Bibliography; Li (Published anthologies and collections) 1) "Zhongwenxi" ^1*52^ [The Chinese department], "Jiumeng"] 0.^3^ [Old dreams], Zhonqguo xiandaizhuyi shiqun daquan 1986-1988  <f^\Slf!^l^^^  it ^Z  i^^-'^'^  [The grand exhibition of Chinese modernist poets 1986-1988], Shanghai: Tongji daxue chubanshe l^^^^'%'i.i'^t.fL. September 1988, pp. 101-104. Also: — "Shijie yongji"^^:!?!^:^ [Crowded world], "JLndxan"-^^j/^ [The inn], "Jiuliao"j^"/SS'^17 [Idle words while drinking], "Wo zhanzhe de shihou"-^ t ^ ^ l ^ ^ ^ ( ^ [While I was standing], pp. 497-499. — "Manghanzhuyi xuanyan" ^^ijz. ^ > < ^ ^ "^ [The macho-man-ism manifesto], p. 95. 2) "Su Dongpo he ta de pengyoumen" ^^%tl^%^i^'^^f\^^^^ [Su Dongpo and his friends], Zhonqguo qingnian xinshichao ^\Wi-^!f%fYi^>:^f{  daxuan  TtJ^i.  [The large collection of Chinese youth's new poetry tide], Xi'an: Zhongguo xinshi wenku chuban zhongxin ' ^ ^ ^  K^  '^)^t!i^^is>-\^  , December 1988, pp.  124-126. 3) "Wo shi zhongguo" [I am China], "Yinghanmen" ;r^j^3^()(^ [The hard men], "Laozhang he zhetian bieri de aiging" ^ ^ p^^^^^^^-^^j •^ [Old Zhang and suffocating love], Disandai shiren tansuo shixuan ^^^j^ >$f<.^^ffftW.\^^^ [A selection of third generation poets' exploratory poetry], Beijing: Zhongguo wenlian chubangongsi •^S^I^ifcjK'"^^ , December 1988, pp. 12-20. 4) "Zhongwenxi" d?;^ 5^ ni" '^^'^Jf.  ^^^^^  [The Chinese department], "Wo he  [Me and you], Zhonqguo tansuoshi jianshanq  f^S^^^f^^-if^  ^^" appreciation  187 dictionary of Chinese exploratory poetry], Shijiazhuang: Hebei renmin chubanshe ^}«^^ -^^A/ ^ Jl^f"^ ' ^^9"^'*^ 1989, pp. 556-563. 5) "Zhongwenxi" ^ ^ ^ [The Chinese department], "Gudai pengyou" "t^^flflTfe ^^^ ancient friend], Menglongshi hou — Zhongguo xianfeng shixuan ^^^^B^P j^^fj^ ^iM %.^^ tr5-jj^ [After Misty poetry — a selection of Chinese avant-garde poetry], Tianjin: Nankai daxue chubanshe (%ft^'?tfiKfe.ft-' J^""^^y 1990, pp. 53-58. 6) "Posui de niizi" ^^^^TM^^'^ 5^ [The shattered woman], "Mengbian de si" ^^ib i^b-^ [Death by dream-side], Miluan de xin^kong i^J/,'^^'^^^ [The infatuated starry sky], Guangzhou: Huacheng chubanshe , August 3 991, pp. 28-30. 7) "Yinghanmen" ^^^^^'if'Q [The hard men], "Zhongwenxi" cti.^^ [The Chinese department], Dengxinrong xingfu de wudao — hou menglongshi xuancui ^ J~/05>^ ^^'^'(Vfe'^^ ^ y ^ ^ ^J^^^vf-i^"^ [The happy dance of the light filament — a selection'of post-Misty poetry], Beijing shiian daxue chubanshe i:!-!:"t"'!"^^ ^ ? it*t^f-^ . July 1992, pp. 80-88.  Bibliography; Li (unpublished or partially published works: mimeographs and manuscripts) 1) "Kunshou" 1^^-^ [The cornered beast], "Manghu" " J / ^ [The blind tiger], "Yijiubaliu nian"-^V.u Si [1986], "Xingzhe"^j-^ [The traveller], "Konglong" ^ : ^ [The dinosaur], "Jiu zhi lu" u"^2_^^ [Wine road], "Juedou">^^ [The duel], "Liulang'^^^^ [Wandering], "Diyige qingren" ^^-/n^^,^ [The first lover], "Youqing" /^if""!  188 [Friendship], 1985-1986, 24 pages. 2) "Dao" ^  [The Island], 1987-1988, 4 pages.  3) "Gei dangd^i shitan yi erguang" '^'^^i^iS-tZ.'~^ ^ [Giving the contemporary poetry scene a slap] (with Liao Yivm and Xiao Kaiyu), 1988, 5 pages. 4) "Tiankong" 5^'^  fThe sky], April 1988, 8 pages.  5) "Xiangei mimi" ^"fg*-^;^ pages. 6) "Huoyan d a o " j ; ^ j ^ ^  [For Mimi], May 1988, 21  [Island of flames], 1989, 8 pages.  7) "Qiushou"^j;^£/'^ [Autumn harvest], March 1989, 8 pages. 8) "Qishou"'^^-^  CThe horse rider], April 1989, 6 pages.  9) "Feixing-'-Jc^-T" [The flight], April 1989, 5 pages.  189 CHRONOLOGICAL BIBLIOGRAPHY OF ZHOO LDNYOO^S WORKS (Underground Journals) 1) "Dai maotouying de nanren"  t^:^'^-^^  ^k^^y^  [The  man with the owl], Xiandai shi neibu jiaoliu ziliao ffiKvfT^Ki/^^^f^^*^®^" poetry internal exchange materials], (Chengau: January 1985), pp. 27-30. 2) "Bailang" ^ " ^ ^ [White wolf], "Wo de xinyue" [My new moon], "Langgu"^^;,^ [Wolf valley], Zhonqguo danqdai shiyan shiqe "^if]^i^ ^ - ^ T'l'-^ [Chinese contemporary experimental poetry], (Fuling: July 1985), pp. 11-13. 3) "Renri"/C-S [Man-sun], Hanshi: ershi shiji biannian shi — 1986 y%f^t -t-^itl^'f^ -A^Vr: [Han poetry: 20th century chronicles — 1986], (Chengdu: spring 1986), pp. 53-57. 4) "Shisanji taijie"~f'=.^^^ ^ [The thirteen-step flight of stairs], "Aiji de maizi":G^^(4j^^^ [The wheat of Egypt], "Yuxing huaping" ^fl^:^:^^ [The fish-shaped flower vase], "Yuanzu" 3 ^ , ^ [The long journey], "Dier dao jiainen"^=.^'J]SJ^j'^ [The second false door], "Huajia"^^'^ [The artist], Feifei j ^ ^ ^ [Not-Not], (Xichang-Chengdu: May 1986), pp. 12-17. Also: — "Biangou: dangdai yishu qishilu" ^ " ^ : ^X'TI^ J o ^ ^ [Structural change: A record of the revelations of contemporary art] (prose essay), pp. 54-59. — "Feifeizhuyi shige fangfa" 31-^ ^^ J:^ i 4 - ^ ;^-;)'2. [Not-Not-ism poetry methods] (prose written together with Lan Ma), pp. 71-73. ~  "Feifeizhuyi xiao cidian" ^^^^ ^Ji^ ,l,^^MM. small dictionary of Not-Not-ism] (prose written  [A  390  —  together with Lan M a ) , pp. 74-75. "Bianhou wuren tan" l%qjf^^X "v?^ [A five-way conversation after writing] (with Yang Li, Lan Ma, Jing Xiaodong and Shang Zhongmin), pp. 78-79, 24.  5) "Dangdai qingnian shige yundong de dier langchao yu xin de tiaozhan" '^H^'^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ 7 ^'^ ^ =- " ^ ^ ^ ^ ^T-(^*ad^k^^v [The second wave of the contemporary youth poetry movement and the new challenge] (prose essay), Feifei pinqlun ^^fey^^y^ [Not-Not criticism] (newspaper format), (Xichang-Chengdu: 1986), p. 4. ~y^^z:.y^M^ [On the second world of 6) "Lun dier shijxe" poetry] (prose essay), Feifei pinqlun ^^J^T'-^y^ [Not-Not criticism] (newspaper format), (Xichang-Chengdu: August 1986), p. 4. 7) "Ziyou fangkuai" "^Ix?^!^^ [Free squares], Bashu xiandai shiqun ^^?j!^'f^'v4-^^ [The modernist poets of Sichuan], (Fuling: Spring 1987), pp. 75-85. 8) "Ziyou fangkuai""llVi?;^:t^  [Free squares], Feifei;  feifeizhuyi shige ziliao erhao rjk.^fe ?-y Z'^^^^^^^ ^^^~% [Not-Not: not-not-ism poetry materials no. 2 ] , (May 1987), pp. 1-10. Also: — "Bianhou wuren zai tan" ^w? fe 3-X^.S_ W ^ [Another five-way conversation after writing] (with Lan Ma, Yang Li, Shang Zhongmin, Jing Xiaodong and Liu Tao), pp. 135-137. 9) "Fan jiazhi —  dui yiyou wenhua de jiazhi qingsuan"  'feftrfl — ^ d ^ ± < t : : , | ^ f [ t i y t ^ [Anti-values settling accounts with existing values of culture] (prose essay), Feifei: feifei nianiian/1988/lilun ^ ^ ^ k : M.^kMM  191 —/Ly\.y\.'^Tv^ [Not-Not: not-not almanac/1988/ theory], (December 1988), pp. 18-44. Also: — "Dangdai wenhua yundong yu disan wenhua" ^^'ST'^toit^l >»7f7 !^^S.^^j;ii [The contemporary culture movement and the third culture] (prose essay), pp. 110-119. 10) "Touxiang-^^-f^ [Portrait of the head], Feifei; feifei nianiian/1989/2uopin =i^^^ : ^^^-^^f^if 8 ^ 4%i^ti [Not-Not; not-not almanac/1989/works], (January 1989), pp. 102-111. Also: —  "Zhongguo shijie 1987-1988 shi da xinwen" cJ2r[5]-^4.^  I<fg:y-i<^g3 •f'^^^l^n [The ten biggest news items in China's world of poetry] (prose), p.l. — "Bianhou santi" ^ ^ " j ^ 3_;^ [Tree topics after writing] (prose), p. 142. 11) "Yongyuan de shangkou" ^ J ^ l ^ ^ ^ o [The everlasting wound], "Shitou goutu de jingkuang" ^ ^ ^ j^fif^S icfyj^^^Zi [The circumstances regarding an arrangement of stones], "Huajia de gaodao zhi he yu aizhong ma" Miid^Ml^S^^^^^ [The high-stepping crane and midget horse of the painter], Xiandai han shi fl^^yiO^ [Modern han poetry], (Beijing: Spring 1991), pp. 65-69. 12) "Zhuti de sunshi" ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ [The subject's loss], "Xiangxian d a n i a o " - ^ ^ ^ ^ [The great bird of the imagination], "Guohe de hanyi" %.^m.&'^'^ :^ [The meaning of a fruit-pit], "Zai daofengshang wancheng de jufa zhuanhuan" 3^70 f|: Jl-!fe ^ ^ ^ ^ V^t f ^ f ^ [Transformation of syntax completed on the knife's edge], Xiandai han shi -p!!ig4^v3LV^ [Modern han poetry], (Beijing: Autumn 1991), pp. 133-139. 13) "Jujue de zitai" ^t&ty's^^ [The posture of refusal] (prose essay), Xiandai han shi •^iS^->}Sl f ^ [Modern  192 han poetry], (Spring/Summer 1992), pp. 106-117. 14) "Xiangxiang daniao"-d^^ X.ii? [The great bird of the imagination], "Guohe de hanyi"^^^ IsJvJ'^X, [The meaning of a fruit-pit], "Zai daofengshang wancheng de jufa zhuanhuan" ^ 7 ^ ^ ^ ' ^ Ji^S^'g^-^X'^t 1^ [Transformation of syntax completed on the knife's edge], "Yongyuan de shangkou" ^l^j^t^yf^cs' [The everlasting wound], "Zhuti de sunshi" ^^^^'^r^-^ [The subject's loss], "Renzhe yixiang" z^*;^'^:^ [The image of the tolerant], "Shitou goutu de jingkuang";g^;fl^/!?|^^^:^^ [The circumstances regarding an arrangement of stones], "Huajia de gaodao zhi he yu aizhong ^SL" ^^^'g^^^Ji^l^ ^ y^^^'^ [The high-stepping crane and midget horse of the painter], "Mao zhuxi shuo" ^ 5 / ^ ^ [Chairman Mao says], "Cong juti dao chouxiang de niao"yCA-^'f^^J^f3?^< £j*9i^ [From the concrete to the abstract bird], "Kan yizhi lazhu dianran" ^ — J.i©jfc^^£ t;^ [Watching a candle ignite], "Yantie de xinqing"^ ^(i^<Or'fT [In a mood to detest iron], "Jian qi m i n g " / ^ | j ^ ^ [A sword's inscription], "Linzhai zhi huo zhong xiang women ziji" ' t p S i - ^ f S l ^ ' i ^ S ^ [Thinking of ourselves in the fire of a neighboring house], "Moni yayu"^j^i^'i2'^)^[Simulating the language of the mute], "Maowang zhi ye"^^±.2jj^ [Night of the cat king], "Ji'e zhi nian"f7Li^^iL.^ [The hungry years], "Shou de fangshi" -^1^9"/^ rD [The way of the hand], "Huoyu de ganjue" >^>^^i>^^ [Fire-bath sensations], "Disandai shiren"^?ip^^5-x^ [Third generation poets], Feifei di wu hao j>^i^^^-^ [Not-Not no. 5 ] , (Autumn 1992), pp. 55-67. Also: — "Hongse xiezuo — 1992 yishu xianzhang huo fei xianshi shige yuanze" ^zg;^<'|c - J i ^ ^ t ^ % ^ ^ S ^ ^ ^ ' ^ $ ^ [Red writing — the 1992 arts charter or the /^!?'J principles of not-leisurely poetry] (prose essay), pp. 1-17.  193 Bibliography; Zhou (establishment literary journals and Hongkong publications) 1) "Gusong"-|^y;;}l^ [The solitary pine], Shikan >^7^'J monthly], (Beijing; October 1981), p. 43.  [Poetry  2) "Chunjie"^^*^ [Spring festival], "Cuowu-^p^-f^ [The mistake], "Huiyi"l^'|"ZJ [Recollections], Feitian wenxue yuekan "^Jt. JC^ J^ f ^l [Feitian literature monthly], (Lanzhou; August 1982), pp. 53-54. 3) "Zuihou yigen huochai" 'fijK'-^^y^ [The last match], Sichuan wenxue yuekan YT^^If Xl"^ J^f"'} [Sichuan literature monthly], (Chengdu; September 1982), p. 71. 4) "Heise de diaoxiang" statue], Xingxing shikan c^^ J>^^'\ monthly], (Chengdu: April 1983).  [The black [Stars poetry  5) "Chunzhuang" i;^'^^ [Spring apparel], Sichuan wenxue yuekan Jl^Jlj ^ § J^ f-tj [Sichuan literature monthly], (Chengdu: August 1983), p. 67. 6) "Heise de diaoxiang"JF^I^yijgij^ [The black statue], Shikan T^^^'J [Poetry monthly], (Beijing; February 1984), pp. 34-36. 7) "Wo shi tanhuaJiang de erzi" ^ : § : ^ ^ ^ l ^ t ) /U ^ [I am the son of a cotton-teaser], Renmin wenxue yuekan A ^j'^Cf^M ^g [People's literature monthly], (Beijing; April 1984), pp. 52-53. 8) "Guoshi" ^ ^ [Fruit?, Feitian wenxue yuekan 7^^-^.^^i] [Feitian literature monthly], (Lanzhou; May 1984), p. 94.  194 9) "Wo gei shenghuo jianying" 1:i< ^ ^ ^ i " ^ " ^ make sketches of life], Shikan yX^iJ [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: October 1984), p. 36.  [I  10) "Jiedeng duguo nei yiye gushi" [The street light has read that one-page story], FeJ.tian "" ^ ^ — I  1  "  wenxue yuekan " ^ ^ X3-J^-f"'J [Feitian literature monthly], (Lanzhou: January 1985), p. 62. 11) "Yike baiyang"— [One white popular], Shikan y$-p^j [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: July 1985), p. 12. 12) "Ai de zhexue" ' ^ d ) - ^ ^ ' ^ [The philosophy of love] (prose essay). Da shidai shuanqyuekan AJ^^'H';^ /j^ -p^ I [The great age bi-monthly], (Fuzhou: 1986 no. 3 ) , pp. 1-14. 13) "Dangdai qingnian shige yundong de dier" langchao yu  xin de tiaozhan"  '^-fj-7^^k&iipti>'9'$^-4i^4R  -^^^^'9'^C'n^ [The second wave of the contemporary youth poetry movement and the new challenge], Langchao congkan "J&:5^fl--^-^^ij [The wave collections], (Guangzhou: 1986 no. 3 ) . 14) "Shuijing hua" ^'^Cj^j^ [The crystal flower], Shikan >^9^<J [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: July 1986), p. 43. 15) "Bailang" jrj^fc [The white wolf], "Langgu" :^^;^ [Wolf valley], Zhonqquo wenxue yuekan '^l!l} ^ ' ^ J^^^y [China literature monthly], (Beijing: October 1986), pp. 49-50. 16) "Shisanji taijie" "f"^ j ^ ^ ^ ptf stairs], Shenzhen qingnian bao  [The thirteen step v'^t^^'l "^'-f^l^  [The  Shenzhen youth daily] (newspaper), (Shenzhen: October 23,  195 1986), p. 2. Also: — "Feifeizhuyi xuanyan" ^p^{i J:-A.^5 [The not-not-ism manifesto] (prose essay), p. 2. 17) "'Disan langchao' yu disandai shiren" ""^Z-J^^^^d ^ J ^ ^ :2K>|^v-f "The third wave" and third generation poets] (prose essay), Shikan •>^-T-<) [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: February 1988), pp. 57-58. 18) "Yuyan de nuli yu shi de zijue"-^4,A>^>:^^z^i9'V^i^t) l^f [The slave of language and the self-awareness of poetry] (prose essay), Danqdai shige yuekan ^ ^ ^ V'=f'^fe. J^'^'J [Contemporary poetry monthly], (Shenyang: March 1988), pp. 36-39. 19) "Yuyan de weizheng" >ir 1.1^ >?1>^'te (The false evidence of language] (prose essay), Shige bao V^^j^^pL [The poetry press], (Hefei: March 6, 1988), p. 4. 20) "Ziyou fangkuai: dongji I, II, V" tlli? 4^'^A^-*'^ ~ "/-^ [Free squares: motives I, II, V ] , Zuojia wenxue yuekan • ^ ^ ^ i : ^ ^f^J [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: April 1988), pp. 41-43. 21) "'Disandai' shilun" ^ =4^i^\jC ' 0 " "third generation" poetry], Yishu guanqjiao yuekan "^j^^JT" |?^ |^ "f'J [Arts corner monthly], (Tianjin: January 1989). 22) "Meili d a o " ^ ^ ^ [Beautiful island], "Yuxing huaping" ^"ff^^-^f^ [The fish-shaped flower vase], Shikan 'V^^'] [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: March 1989), pp. 24-25. 23) "Kan yizhi lazhu dianran" [Watching a candle ignite], Zhenqminq yuekan ^ * ^ ^1^J  196 [Contention monthly], (Hongkong: December 1990), p. 23. 24) "Huajia de gaodao zhi he yu aizhong ma" S^^^'j^lffy^J^tSj^ ^ ^ / ^ ^ [The high-stepping crane and midget horse of the painter], "Dier dao jiamen" IID ^^-.^i"^^ 1^^ [The second false door], "Xiangxiang daniao" -^^ ^ "yt ^ [The great bird of the imagination], "Jingzhong de shitou" 'f^»^<^P/^i^ [The stone in the mirror], Renmin wenxue yuekan y<^^.X^ J^?'J ^People's literature monthly], (Beijing: July 1993), pp. 149-151. 25) "Disandai shiren" %S4^y^y<^ [Third generation poets ], Kaifanq zazhi yuekan :f\- "^fi-^^ J^ f^\ [ Open magazine monthly], (Hongkong: August 1993), p. 100. Also: — "Hongse xiezuo de jingyi" f^^^'^'f-^^h^i^L [Selections from red writing] (prose essay), pp. 101-102  Bibliography: Zhou (Published anthologies and collections)  1) "Wo Shi tanhuaJiang de erzi" ^ : ^ ^ $ ^ 3" 1^"^ / b 3 " [I am the son of a cotton-teaser], "Heise de diaoxiang" ^ ^ ^^J^^ [The black statue], " J i a n m o " ^ ^ ' 1 Keep silent], Danqdai qinqnian shiqinqshi sanbaishou '^i^i^-%% [Three hundred lyric poems by contemporary youth] (volume 2 ) , Guiyang: Guizhou renmin chubanshe-^:^ > ^ ^ / ^ ± ' W^y 1985, pp. 465-470. 2) "Chunjie"-:§r*p  [Spring festival], Dangdai daxuesheng  shuqinqshi jinqxuan ^ ^ i d ^ ^ ^ ^ ' \ ^  >-f-^^|^  (A  selection of the best lyric poems of contemporary university students], Chengdu: Sichuan daxue chubanshe IZgJlj 7^*^iil/^^/ October 1987, p. 51.  197 3) "Dier dao jiamen" ^ — ^ ' f ^ ^ f ^ fThe second false door], "Yuxing huaping" ^ - f f ^ ^ ^ ^ I The fish-shaped flower vase], "Yuanzu"^^^ [The long journey], Zhonqquo xiandaizhuyi shiqun daquan 1986-1988 '^^fi^i^ 2;p<^>X^^7^3?ji^ [The grand exhibition of Chinese modernist poets 1986-1988], Shanghai; Tongji daxue chubanshe /^yf^Tv^ ^f^^f-i, September 1988, pp. 41-44. Also: — "Feifeizhuyi xuanyan" $M-^^^J<^ _g_5. [The not-not-ism manifesto] (prose essay), pp. 33-35. 4) "Langgu"t9^:*^ [Wolf valley], Zhonqquo qinqnian  xinshichao daxuan  ^^fM^'f^fy^'^M-^i^&i  [The large collection of Chinese youth's new tide poetry], Xi'an: Zhongguo xinshi wenku chuban zhongxin f^-ffflf^ii^if^fK^-^ r December 1988, pp. 43-45. 5) "Bailang" 1"^^^ [The white wolf], "-La-nqgn^'^^yg[Wolf valley], "Dai maotouying de nanren" ^y)^^ PM \^^ ^^^^ [The man with the owl], Disandai shiren tansuo shixuan •^£r^P'^!>-^^^^i^^^[A selection of third generation poets' exploratory poetry], Beijing: Zhongguo wenlJan chuban gongsi 'f^ ^ ^ d ^ M ^ ' ^ f , December 1988, pp. 161-170. 6) "Huajia yu shierduo xiangrikui" i^^<-^T~ [The artist and twelve sunflowers], Daohuozhe '^ y^"/^ [Thieves of fire], Beijing: Zhongguo wenlian chuban  gongsi -"f^lil ;^:^tlj ^f^''A ^  ' ^"''^ ^^^^' PP*  53-55. 7) "Ziyou fangkuai: dongji I, V" ' § 1 ^ 7 ^ ^ ; %p^fhlj'^M^^ [Free squares: motives I, V ] , Zhongguo tansuoshi iianshana_ci^ian f / S ^ $ v f ^ ^ ^ t p ^ lAn appreciation dictionary of Chinese exploratory poetry].  198 Shijiazhuang: Hebei renmin chubanshe August 1989, pp. 603-606. 8) "Huajia: xianshi 2" J ^ ^  : fiS^ —  ^**! ::)-^X.^it!^j^lj^^  CPainter: reaJity 2 ] ,  Menglonqshi hou — Zhonqquo xianfenq shixuan j^S^J^^ "^"T fe"~~ ^ 1 5 ) ^ ^ ^ ^ •i>5-.^> [After Misty poetry — a selection of Chinese avant-garde poetry], Tianjin: Nankai daxue chubanshe {^^i^;^ JH f^5^^-dl. , January 1990, pp. 121-122. 9) "Ziyou fangkuai: dongji I, II, V" '@Vi?:^1^ ,' >«7MT^"",-=-/-^^ [Free squares: motives I, II, V ] , Denqxinronq xinqfu de wudao — hou menqlonqshi xuancui ^TiC'^^'$l^(%^^l^—7^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ [The happy dance of the liqht filament — a selection of post-Misty poetry], Beijing shifan daxue chubanshe i ^ "^T'l^J^ 7s-^iii ^^jfe.^ , July 1992, pp. 285-290.  Bibliography: Zhou (unpublished or partially published works: mimeographs and manuscripts)  1) "'Disandai' shi l^^" ^ 5 ^ 1^ vh;, [On "third generation" poetry] (prose essay), April 1988, 34 pages. 2) "Disandai shi: dui hunluan de chengqing"''^=_-^"'y^ J '7'd~ ^tti'S1jl^yc^T[Third generation poetry: clearing up the confusion] (four-way conversation with Shang Zhongmin, Yang Li and Lan M a ) , April 1988, 8 pages.  199 GENERAL BIBLIOGRAPHY  Ai Fei "^^ , "Huhuan shihun" B ^ o ^ > ^ Z^j^ fCall out the spirit of poetry], Shikan-r^^iJ [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: March 1992). Ba Tie E ^ , "'Sicheng' lungang" <<-^-f:^» vf J|^ [A theoretical outline of "The city of death"], Zuojia wenxue yuekan >f T ^ X^J^-?HJ [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: February 1989. Ba Tie B-?i^ ' '"^^ <^® zhiniu, ta de reqing —  i(&d^iy^,i(&^'^'tf-fi^J^;^  lijie Liao Yiwu"  fHi^ willfulness, his  enthusiasm — understanding Liao Yiwu], Zhonqguo wenxue yuekan '^^X-^Mf^^] [China literature monthly], (Beijing: November 1986). Bai Hang ti^ti' "D" ^iao Yiwu" V ^ ^ * " ? ! * ^ ' [ Reading Liao Yiwu], Xingxing shikan ^f^ y^^ij [Stars poetry monthly], (Chengdu: November 1987). Barnstone, Tony, Out of the Howling Storm: The New Chinese Poetry. Hanover: University Press of New England, 1993. Brown, Edward J., Russian Literature Since the Revolution. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1982. Chen Xiaoming P^B^SR  zhuyi de xingqi"  r "Lishi zhuanxing yu houxiandai-  ^^l^t^j^i^fSi^^^X^^^  [The shape of historical turns and the rise of post-modernism], Huacheng wenxue shuanqyuekan ^^'t^^^f^ iZXj9fHj [Flower city^ literature bimonthly], (Guangzhou: 1993 no. 2 ) .  200 Cheng Guangwei ^ ^ J j ^ ^ , "Dangqian shi chuangzuo de liangge jiben xiangdu" ^ f l j • v f - ' g l ' K ^ ^ ^ l ^ ' J ^ ^ f S j / ^ [Two fundamental tendencies of current poetic creation], Wenxue pinglun shuangyuekan ^ i y ^ >-^ "JLji j ^ "T^M [Literary criticism bimonthly], (Beijing: 1989 no. 5 ) . Cheng Guangwei /fj-^^'V , "Feigexinghua — dui disandai shi chuangzuolun de jieshi" .^^/f^l)"^^!^ — ^^^H.'f'^ V ^ ' ^ ^ H ^ ^ ) ^ | ^ ^ ^ ^ m E [Depersonalization — an explanation of third generation poetry creative theory], Feitian wenxue yuekan 'S^J^'^^-^lj [Feitian literature monthly], (Lanzhou: March 1989). Cuddon, J. A., The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory. London: Penguin Books, 1992. Dante Alighieri, Inferno. New York: Bantam Books, 1982. Des Pres, Terrence, Praise & Dispraise; Poetry and Politics, the 20th Century. London: Penguin Books, 1988. Duke, Michael S., ed.. Contemporary Chinese Literature — An Anthology of Post-Mao Fiction and Poetry. New York: A. E. Sharpe Inc., 1985. Ellman, Richard and 0'Clair, Robert, ed.. The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1975. Er Duo ^ - ^ , "'Xianfeng' de chenluo" "* ^ ^ f 4 ^ > ^ ) ^ [The decline of the "avant-garde"], Shikan .T^JilJ [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: February 1990). Fu Sang J ^ - ^ , "Lun xiandai shishi n > o s h i " > ^ ^ ^ ^ J ^ y ^ ^ ( ^ ^ [On models of modern epics], Feitian wenxue yuekan  201 "^J^ XJ'^^'HA January 1989).  [Feitian literature monthly], (Lanzhou:  Han D o n g ^ i ^ and Zhu Wen -^X. ' "Guzha bitan" ^ j ^ ! ^ > ^ [Conversation about writing by the ancient dam], Zuojia wenxue yuekan '/^^<.3?13' ^'^ij [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: April 1993). Hsu, Kai-yu, Literature of the People's Republic of China. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1980. Huang Canran"vS^^^^, , "Zhongguo xiandaishi de dixiashi' 11" (shang, zhong, xia) " Y ® f E ' K v ^ ' ^ ' ^ T >f-" J^.'^Z [Chinese modern poetry's underground poetry (parts 1-3)], Sing Tao Daily i ^ ^ f] |j[^ , (Hongkong: 1993 July 18, 19, 20). Huang Canran , "'Zhongguo xiandaishi de dixiashi' buyi (shang, xia) ""Vf^g^Jg^-j^'yl^^ j ^ 7ry^'^|-jg -1^,7^ [Addendum to "Chinese modern poetry's underground poetry" (parts 1-2)", Sing Tao Daily @^ A ^iS\ (Hongkong: 1993 September 18, 19). ^ (Xiao) Kaiyu (^J ff *^, , "Zhongguo dier shijie" ^^Q^J^^ V^-in^ [China's second world of poetry], Zuojia wenxue yuekan *( jF^i;.X^Ji"^J [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: July 1989). Lao Yu •:^fg; , "Lun feifeizhuyi shige" ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ X . vf-^^^ [On the poetry of not-not-ism], Dangdai wenxue yanjiu ziliao yu xinxi shuangzhoukan ^•^^ SC -^ ^fiF5^ ^c'^'T ^1^% [Contemporary literature research materials and information biweekly], (Beijing: 1989 no. 8/9).  202 Liu, James J. Y., The Art of Chinese Poetry. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1962. Li Fukang and Hung, Eva, "Post-Misty Poetry", Renditions, (Hongkong: Spring 1992 no. 3 7 ) . Mandelstam, Nadezhda, Hope Abandoned. London: Collins Harvill, 1989. Milosz, Czeslaw, Selected Poems, New York: Seabury Press, 1973. Ouyang Jianghe ^^ff^-yX. > ^ , "Cong sange shidian kan jinri zhongguo shit an" AA^'^r^JE^Sr^^G «t"lS >ff^ [Looking at China's poetry scene today from three perspectives], Shikan "v3-'^|J [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: June 1988). Peng Fang ^L^^ t "'Tansuo' de zhemo yu kunhuo" ""^^X- ^ ^ "^T^^ ^ (^'^[The tortures and perplexities of "exploration"], Shikan V ^ T'J [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: October 1989). Qian Guangpei ' J ^ ' ^ i ^ ^ , "Zhi xin shi xingshi de ^^Mfr chuangzuozhe" T^^-Jf'^i^^^'t^^J-^^*^ [To the creators of new poetic forms], Shikan -^^-pn [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: June 1987). Shen Tianhong ji qi pipan"  , "Zhongguo houxiandaizhuyi shige  [Chinese post-modernist poetry and its criticism], Caoyuan wenxue yuekan "WiJ^ ^ 3 J^ • U [Plains literature monthly], (Huhehot: August 1987). Shen Zeyi / ^ ' ^ ^  ' "Dedao de yu shigu de —  tan  203  xinshengdai shi" '^^^l]iy^  J:j ^ i 1^'^— y^$ffti\^  i^  [Gains and losses — on the poetry of the new-born generation], Wenxue pinqlun shuanqyuekan 2^*3- V^"^(^ ^Xj^-^'J [Literary criticism bimonthly], (Beijxng: 1989 no. 3 ) . Shi Guanghua - ^ ^ > - ^ , "Miandui shige da langchao" (57^7 [Facing up to the great tide of poetry], Shikan •p5--^y [Poetry monthly], (Beijing: October 1988). Shi Kong04"*:^  / "Jinqi guanyu shige wenti de taolun"_^rJ^0  ^^'iS'^fjkjI^^l^^ny-tl [Recent discussion about problems in poetry], Feitian wenxue yuekan ^^-^ ^ " ^ "^"^J [Feitian literature monthly], (Lanzhou: July 1989). Skvorecky, Josef, Talkin' Moscow Blues. Toronto: Lester & Orpen Dennys, 1988. Tang Chao, ed.. New Tide; Contemporary Chinese Poetry. Toronto: Managajin Books, 1992. Tang Xiaodu / t ^ i l and M . i . i t ^ , ...uanyu dan,dai wenxue wenti duihua" ^ ^ ^ ^ ' i : ' ^ / * ] ^ ^^^ v j [A conversation about problems in contemporary literature], Guandong wenxue yuekan 3 ^ $ - ^ * ' ^ ^ 'M [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan: December 1987). Tang Xiaodu /j^^^lj^ and Wang Jiaxin _ £ - ^ ^fV , "5:ai du gudu: qingnian shiren chuangzuo yi pie" •^j-7§,^u\^% ' [Alone again: a quick glance at the work of young poets], Zuojia wenxue yuekan 'i%^<^ JSC^^^'J [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: April 1988). Tang Xiaodu y ^ j ^ ^ ; ^ ^  , "Chunshi: xuwang yu zhenshi zhi  204 jian" ^-if  : M:^!^J^%S^\^  [Pure  poetry: between truth and fabrication], Wenxue pinglun shuangyuekan jCx y^y^ ^ ^ ^ TlJ [Literary criticism bimonthly], (Beijing: February 1989). Tang Xiaodu / ^ B ^ "l^^^^  / Buduan chonglin de qidian y^ (jfr  '^)l^^^^^^^\ f^^® ever-recurrent starting point]. Beijing: Wenhua yishu chubanshe [^.'Tfeli'xi >i^''fi/^'felM^ 1989. Tang Xiaodu/^v'^'!^ V ^ ed. , Zhongguo dangdai shiyan shi ^1^^"f^^-^^ ^ ^ i ^ [Contemporary Chinese experimental poetry]. Shenyang: Chunfeng wenyi chubanshe  Tang Xiaodu y ^ 0 ^ V ^ ed. , Dengxinrong xingfu de wudao — hou menqlongshi xuancui )t^P'd^^"2-f(Sl^,^6.(^^— 7 ^ ^%Jti^ >^^.$ fThe happy dance of the light filament — a selection of post-Misty poetry]. Beijing shifan daxue chubanshe Jb f^'/^i^X ^ ^ ^^5^^^ 1992. Tian Zhen ^ - ^  , "Wenyi chuangzuo de xin jinling"  ^ fN®^ ^^"s °^ artistic creation], Zhengming zazhi yuekan ^ * ^ ^ ^ S ' ^"^'J [Contention magazine monthly], (Hongkong: August 1993). J<C'2I'2)K1R-^^"?^^  Treece, Henry, Dylan Thomas: Dog Among Fairies. New York: John de.Graff Inc., 1956. Wu Xiao ^ B^ and Chen Xuguang ^ ^ ^ ^  , "Jin ji nian  shige lilun wenti shuping" ) ^ ru - ^ ^-^Ji; i £ V ^ i « ) S ^ i ^ Vf- [A review of problems in poetic theory in recent years J, Dangdai wenxue yanjiu ziliao yu xinxi  shuangzhoukan  %Vi  ^^%>^^'i^i%%  205 [Contemporary literature research materials and information biweekly], (Beijing: 1989 no. 11-12). Xie Mian > ^ ^ ^ , "Kongjian de kuayue —  shige yundong  Shi nian" '£/e] ^ ^ j ^ ; ^ v f ^ i i S > ^ t f* f^ leap in space ten years of the poetry movement], Wenyi lilun yanjiu yuekan ^"Si ^ ^ B ' ^ ' ^ -^"^'J [The^study of arts theory monthly], (Shanghai: May 1987). Xie Mian i^pf^  chao ••  ' "Meili de dunyi —  lun zhongguo hou xinshi  ^ m ^ ^ 2E:ii_ — }tf^^i^p^l4^  f The  beautiful escape — on China's later new poetry tide], Wenxue pinglun shuangyuekan - ^ ^ y ^ f^ yCjL^ "f"*) [Literary criticism bimonthly], (Beijing: 1988 no. 6 ) . Yan Yuejun f - g ) ^ ^ ^ t . al., ed., Menglong shixuan ^ J ^ [Misty poetry selections]. Shenyang: Chunfeng wenyi chubanshe ^/S<L^'2) iil>fc?^ , 1985.  V^  Yang Li , "Chuanyue diyu de lieche — lun disandairen shige yundong (1980-1985)" ^ ^ i S ^ k K ^^ ^^)^—}Z% ~^>X.yS-^^iS 5ty^ [The train that passed through hell — on the third generation poetry movement (19801985)], Zuojia wenxue yuekan 4'p^TT.'^ ,]^-f^] [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: July 1989). Yang Xiaobin ip2)*V^/^^  , "Bengkui de shiqun —  dangjin  xianfeng shige de yuyan yu zitai" !M^/^ ^'9 y^""^^ — "^^ ^^V?fp^^>^S.^^^ fThe poets of collapse ~ the language and postures of contemporary avant-garde poetry], Zuojia wenxue yuekan T K - ^ 3 C ' ^ J^ "^^ [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: September 1989). »  Yang Yuanhong li^jj^ ^  and Pan Jiazhu /^•^^^^^  / "Feixu  206 zhandou shi he wei" ^ ^ J ^ * ^ ^ ^ ' > ^ ' 1 ^ ^ A [Ruins war what is to become of poetry], Shanghai wenxue yuekan jti^^^lM't''J'^^^^"9^^-'- literature monthly], (Shanghai: September 1989). Yao Jiahua Jyf^Sis;^^ , ed., Menglonqshi lunzheng ji fi$J^l^}^W^ f^^® Misty poetry debate]. Beijing: Xueyuan chubanshe ^jk^^^^i^^^ ' J^989. Ye Zhiqiu '^J^W/^  r "Dalu wenyijie xianqi fanzuo nuchao"  i<^%Sc^2^^f^ft^l5d^^^iH^ fAn angry tide of anti-leftism arises on the mainland], Zhonqquo shibao zhoukan '^/J) B=J^J^/f|'^'J [China times weekly], (Taibei: September 13-19, 1992). Zhu Dake  "^jJ^L ^  baipishu"  , "Kongxin wenxue — guanyu xinshiqi de  1^1^-^'g ^^ — :*jf-^rri^JflX^j^ '^^'^  fHollow literature — a white paper about the new era], Zuojia wenxue yuekan | (cA<_j^'X fl'^0 [Author literature monthly], (Changchun: September 1989). Zhu Lingbo ^y%r$^ , "Disandaishi gaiguan" ^^3:^y^'^lt^^J^ [A general perspective of third generation poetry], Guandonq wenxue yuekan y^ ^jL.'/r' J^'f'!\ [Guandong literature monthly], (Liaoyuan: June 1987).  207  Appendix  TRANSLATIONS BEI DAO, LIAO YIWO, LI YAWEI, ZHOU LUNYOU  208  Poems by Bei Dao  1  Photo by Saundra Sturdeva  Resume Baseness is the password of the base. Honor is the epitaph of the honorable. Look how the gilded sky is covered With the drifting, crooked shadows of the dead. The Ice Age is over now. Why is there still ice everywhere? The Cape of Good Hope has been discovered. Why do a thousand sails contest the Dead Sea? I come into this world Bringing only paper, rope, a shadow. To proclaim before the judgment The voices of the judged: Let me tell you, world, I—do—not—believe.' If a thousand challengers lie beneath your feet. Count me as number one thousand and one. I don't I don't I don't I don't  believe believe believe believe  the sky is blue; in the sound of thunder, that dreams are false; that death has no revenge.  If the sea is destined to breach the dikes. Let the brackish water pour into my heart; If the land is destined to rise. Let humanity choose anew a peak for our existence. A new juncture and glimmering stars Adorn the unobstructed sky. They are five thousand year old pictographs. The staring eyes of future generations.  I once goosestepped across the square my head shaved bare the better to seek the sun but in that season of madness I changed direction, meeting the expressionless goats on the other side of the fenc. until I saw my ideals on blank paper that seemed from a saline-alkaline soi I curved my spine believing I had found the only way to express the truth, like a baked fish dreaming of the sea Long live. ..II shouted the blasted cry once only and then sprouted a beard tangled like countless centuries I was obliged to do battle with history and at knife-point formed a family alliance with idols, not indeed to cope with the world that is fragmented in a fly's eye among piles of endlessly bickering books we calmly divided into equal parts the few coins we made from selling off the stars in a single night I gambled away my belt, and returned naked again to the world lighting a noiseless cigarette a gun bringing death to that midnight when heaven and earth changed places I hung upside down in an old tree that looked like a mop gazing into the distance  209  TRANSLATIONS: LIAO YIWU  210  THE HIGH PLATEAU On the high plateau, even snow-capped mountains seem tiny. Edging along white slopes it appears you could pass into the pulsing sky Lift your head, turbulent clouds brush against your lips, lighting a fire that races through your body Hawks casually swoop low, at the same speed seemingly as torrents of water that sound like horses hooves We these men who love to move as rivers do, like to go to highways and gaze into the distance onto avalanches that burst angrily open like flowers. We then give out a great shout and listen to the sound clatter down the cliffs of Mount Haizi like a clumsy log, setting off a sequence of delightful echoes (on the high plateau, hollering is great pleasure) Of course, we still ride out on patrol or to race, blowing lustily on bone hunting-horns bursting the sun tied to the mountain tops like a balloon. At dusk or dawn, shreds of sunlight drift down causing "red roses" to blossom on the river banks and the valley floors And then often we imagine that spring has come, even late at night when a boastful wind is making a great noise deep in the bowels of the earth we imagine a liquid spring welling up, warmly shooting through the great belly the earth's temperature gradually rising  211  quiet to feeling .usic flowing forth fro. the starry .ouths of flutes. We believe any myth we even believe ourselves to be small n i . "e small pieces of sky scattering over the high plateau  -published in A Collection of Exploratory Verse f ^ ^ ' ^ ' 1 ^ ^ ' ^ ^ ' ^^ Shanghai Arts Publishing House, August 1986, hi^^^S^ pp. 239- 241; dsstkand, Poetry Monthly, 1984 #8, pp. 28-29, Beijing.  212  5LEEP  (1986)  Dearest, your sleep opens my imagination up. Sep«»rated by a window. The dark night has been set in a cavernous fish bowl. The moon is a misty navel, dwindling to a spot in the distance.  A great swarm of crystaline  tadpoles squirm out from within, passing through clumps of reeds, tapping on the window pane with their tenuous tails. You smile amid the charming swish. Eyelashes laid over pure white illusions, the seam of your eye is like a trail hidden by pine needles. I pass this way to get near the subtle sleeping spirit  the innermost chamber. The beggar  of Fate is curled up within shivering in the wind, a burbling spring glides over his bare feet and climbs upwards, nourishing a layer of real mud on the chamber roof the plough of day turns soil in wide sweeps Dearest, your fertile sleep changes the nothingness into reality. The day stretches in two directions. I, a slave to illusion, stand between. Cautiously beating out the night watch. "Prose Poems Written for A-Xia"{DEEP ENTRY and SLEEP) published in Poetry Monthly, 1987 #1, p. 54, Beijing; in Stars Poetry Monthly, 1987 #7, pp. 78-79, Chengdu, Sichuan Province  ;.i3  DEEP ENTRY (1986)  In this unending solitude, the tide of love swells sadly up to my ear and ebbs quietly only to several times retreat. To the sound of breaking waves, I dive ever deeper until I enter your innermost being. Like walking into a land within a land the tempest subsides, without sun or moonlight, I can only vaguely sense the cautious changing of the seasons on a hazardous bluff. Time passes: a century as quickly as a foxes tail  a  flash at the entrance to time's tunnel and gone. My brief life is enveloped so by your breast, threaded through by your everlasting veins. I become part of your heart, pulsing always, sending this love for you, sending this love to a deeper, distant world  Written before the gates of "THE CITY OF DEATH"  And now let us enter the City of Death. Don't ask stupid questions like who Allah Fahweh is, when he died, or what the relationship between the bull, god and the people is. If you enter early into the year 6891 and discover your true "home", if you are brutally lashed to the wheel of time  turning head over feet hitting the ground,  whatever you do, don't cry out in despair: This is the city of death, no one will save you. Future, present, past; past, present future  the  environment where you exist has changed completely. Who knows when history has it's beginning? You think some names sound familiar: Jiang He, Bei Dao, Gu Cheng^, Zhang Chungiao, Li Weidong^, and so on  naturally you only  remember the era in which you lived. Your deepest overall impressions are always of the Chinese faction fight that broke out in 1966. Fluttering ranks of red cloth incited all to struggle against each other, to hunt down and slaughter the bull of illusion. Have you ever heard the string of crisp popping sounds made when gonads are smashed? That sound kept me terrorized for thousands of years. You have to believe me, believe the lonely craftsman who built the "City of Death". I can recite my name, age and place of  ^Three well-known popular poets who gained prominence in the early 1980's. ^Two prominent figures during the Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976  215  birth fairly accurately to you to prove that I have never gone mad. I can fairly accurately knock on the door of each acquaintance and little by little insinuate my solitude into their bodies, fomenting the madness hidden by the soul. No matter how pretty the mask, the force of instinct flows on forever from a far-off source. The task of art is to resist convention, to build an opposite world on top of the' strict, scientific order, to satisfy absolutely free, frenzied imaginings, to let the material and spiritual reach relative balance. My task is simply to save the imaginative character of mankind's childhood from base reality. It stands detached above time and space, above feelings of mother-love and fond remembrances of times past. It includes creative blasphemy (like the angelic look of pleasure on a child's face who pisses on a whole city off the top of a tall building) and profane procreation (like a child poking a stick into the crotch of Nu Wa's statue^ and imagining her riding his "flying horse"). Often children are seen casually abandoning their painstakingly constructed sand castles. This [activity] is obviously a far cry removed from rational and lofty human nature. However, an artist's sincerity is found in that he doesn't take pleasure from this world, in that he willfully searches out the entire developing story of a people or even all of mankind. He jabs  ^Chinese goddess said to have created mankind from clay and to have cleared the earth of threats to man.  216  at its fatal weakness' and at the cost of his life sounds a warning signal: He reveals the roots of the collective sickness which under the domination of primal, supra-natural forces causes people to mutilate and kill themselves and each other. [Manifestations of] anxiety, crisis, despair and rebellion ensure this City of Death won't receive a ready welcome, and Liao Yiwu's value lies precisely in this fact. Once a poet achieves universal public acclaim, his artistic life is done.  217  THE CITY OF DEATH  6891 AD, a giant bull circles the brown [Sichuan] basin. Near death, Allah Fahweh, prophet of Ba People Village, points to the ground and says: "This city will hem you in, no matter whether god is dead or alive."  ^  published without the preface and with editing out of  certain politically sensitive sections in: People's Literature literary monthly, 1987 #1-2, pp. 58-62, Beijing; and An Appreciation Dictionary of Chinese Exploratory Poetry, Hebei People's Publishing House, August 1989, pp. 496-502, Shijiazhuang City  218  You've crossed this threshold. Such graceful footsteps, daylight crackles like a large burning candle. Cow's milk everywhere. Nudging forward, spear grass shining like curved horns. A hole is hacked into your instep. You howl three times, hooves burst out of your lower limbs. What a miraculous bull you are nowl The light of the setting sun shudders and goes out. Leaving behind a large pool of wax. I saw you dissolve in thick milk. Become a puff of smoke  Night of thunder. After the clash of the cattle horns. A cracked sky, bovine eyes flooded with tears. One pops out at some girl's belly  I come bawling into the world. Become your indirect seed. I clearly remember you crossed this threshold. And telling me that you weren't coming back this time. Daddy of my imaginings! Me, sitting all day on my own at the edge of the stairs. Drooling. Smiling stupidly at green-faced long-distance travellers. Who am I begging for news of you? Behind, the hunchback who bore me stands out clearly  Fifteenth day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar. The traditional ghost festival. The graveyard is really hopping. Like a large pier. Boats on the river Styx all dock here. You're sculling. The oar blade smashes the knee caps  219 of the spirit worshippers. A tumult of grandmotherly voices rises in drunken madness. Unclear who is ghost and who human, I want to cry out. A troop of frogs leaps up and scurries into my mouth. A hellish wind gushes up, suddenly. The hunchback throws himself on the ground and becomes a stone turtle. I snuggle up against it. Like a woman I lavish a terminal tenderness on it. I dig out what's in my mouth. Drag out coils of my own intestine. Out of the corner of my eye I see you cut a person in half at the waist and make the lower half hop in front of me and ask:  "Allah Fahweh. Where are my trousers?"  I remember your bloody hands. Leaping over rows of white walls. The faint sound of chickens clucking. The fifteenth day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar. Gravestones flood the city like a rolling tide. Stand facing the human houses  Through a screen I watch mourners move off into the distance. I finish burning paper money and make my way out of the mountain cliffs. A snake bite draws my attention, the Styx has vanished. Trails of smoke like a path scarcely travelled. Stretching out, peacefully. When the silver-scaled snake climbs onto a branch, the black spots just now journeying on into the distance turn right around immediately and come back. Come toward me and slip away into my heart  220 I am an empty city sunk inside another empty city. A spacious world. I am the room from which tragic laughter bursts forth each night. An owl is in full bloom like a black spring flower on a railing. Wild vines conceal masks that come out and sink in the windows. The mourners' cries linger in my ears. The roots of my hair are soaked with the stench of death  Ghosts are everywhere. People are sunk in the pleasures of pillow and bedclothes. Suspended in mid-air the waste land grows. Grass roots plunge into the earth of dreams. You cross every threshold on the way to the bell tower. Time is controlled by a revolving sword. Is that the icon over the land of freedom?  Summer sea of 1986. Mankind's ferry is still tossing. The steam whistle blows. Frightening flocks of birds with dazzling scales and shells. Inspired by these birds my dry land slowly emerges. Like an earthen jar with blue algae climbing over it. The dull setting sun just covers its mouth. Constructs a city of golden jade. Winding coral. Seahorses frolic. Pillars of waves form overlapping ranks like the postures of dancing shark folk. Gemstone necklaces are left behind on the sea  221 The wind at dusk is a vast copper column flattening the water. A booming sound reverberates from antiquity. Seizes the muddy, cold and dense wandering whirl of time. I hear urgent footsteps rise up from the undersea. In the distance I see countless men and women, there a dragon's tail sculling. Battalions of people bow down to pray toward the new city. The temple of prayer is constantly scorching them like a solid flame. Holy lord Jesus squats on the temple top leading the dirges. Voices and tears of blood. The sky above, the sea below. Riding a white horse, the bride is as changeable as the clouds  The multitude follows the lead. The gentle black face of gauze descends. Nietzsche, the sacrifice, is torn limb from limb by teary-eyed disciples. His smoking remains slither toward the city walls. Scrutinize the posted notice made from his skin:  "God is dead ... Are we now headed into that distant place?  "  The sounds of music linger on. Jesus died first. Several great dictators argue softly over something on the pillar of punishment-by-fire. Suddenly police sirens scream. Large bridges collapse. Freeways crash into dizzying ravines. Lines of able-bodied men answer the call and enter the palace. Tearing at each other like marionettes. Like paper towers in children's crotches tall buildings shrivel. Shreds of paper fly about. Can't distinguish if they are peach  f  blossoms, human heads or leaflets inciting holy wars. After a frenzied bombardment my land is sinking. All that remains sighing among the turbid waves is half a lion's leg. Winter of 1966. Chang E-* elopes with an infidel. An angry Hou Yi^ shoots ten suns blind. The civilization of this people of illusions is committed completely to the flames. Some poet wrote:  "When the wisdom of man attempts to surpass the wisdom of the creator their day of judgement is at hand  Those lines in the tongue of tadpoles enchant me: god is dead. Who will manipulate the chess pieces hanging in the air? A ferocious echo. I'm devoured by my own voice. Like worn clothing, the flesh and skin pealed off my bones of their own accord. My brain itches. The ants go in and out. Summer sea of 1986. Gloomy world of man. Nietzche returns from his tour of the Milky Way. A sacrificial Liao Yiwu is just about to izmnolate himself in front of the mob. Policemen carry him from dreamland to the insane asylum  ^Chinese goddess of the moon. ^Legendary figure who shot down nine suns with arrows  223  I clutch the bed sheets tightly. The end of the corridor. An opening and closing, tear-jerking rose. Sleepwalkers shrink into pistil-sucking insects. I listen closely to the slow advance of feet trampling petals. Again. And again. Nu Wa's face flashes past the iron-barred window. A stethoscope is poked through the wall. You drift into awareness.  Crescent-shaped cattle horns. Live fish nudging upward obscured below the abdomen. From the shape of you I've recovered childhood. Roe are gently teasing my penis there are always mothers who uncross their legs lie supine on the beach use exquisite egg-shaped pebbles steeped in blood. Against the current I hauled in the baby crab's home. Shared a meal of sand worms. Several seamen swim through my armpits. Fan-like cacti fold and unfold. Grains of sand join infectiously in singing red folk songs. I come across Gu Cheng drinking his fill from Lorca's brook. Voices of greeting rise up through a crack. French, Inca, Hebrew  And what language do you speak? Where does your stethoscope want to lead me? An orchard of peach trees. A couple of doctors called Jiang He are off in pursuit of Nu Wa. Kua Fu^, Xing Tian^, Qu Yuan^, Zhuang Zhou*, organs of _  -^legendary figure who pursued the sun ^legendary figure cast from heaven after losing in battle with the emperor of heaven  caused to have breasts  for eyes and a belly button for a mouth -^a famous poet of China's antiquity "a famous Taoist philosopher of China's antiquity  224  crazed ancestors have all been slashed off. The senseless butchering peach-blossom village I managed to escape and following you forced my way into the tumultuous square. I performed for all the lunatics: turned all the self-absorbed third generation^ madmen into hogs with poems dangling at their waists  Beasts everywhere. Foreshadowing my fate. A red wolf stares at me until saliva drips from his mouth. I try repeatedly to flee from the palm of your hand. Dark images wedge into surrounding walls. Like mutant spawn of dinosaurs. In the age of space flight I flex my talons. A gold-quilled hedgehog quivers. A feathered arrow sprouts from between my lips. Come here, you  demon. Mankind. Pistols and  necromancy! I'd rather die in all-absorbing mortal combat! See the moon's spider winding roll on roll of iron netting wire. Escaped prisoners dangle by their feet from the net  Pitiful escapees! Their bloodied clothing is stripped away by others of their ilk. Art is hung in the great exhibition hall treated like totems  look. Ladies and gentlemen  arrive. Clip, clop of heels. Walking sticks point out empty sleeves. I ride a toy train travelling back and forth between the asylum and the grave. Travellers are forever getting on and off. Absentminded faces. Heads of people and corpses indistinguishable. I witness medicine made from  ^Young poets who gained prominence in the mid-1980's.  225  their brains being sold at each train station to cure the mad ravings  But those stars high in the sky look so much like crystal umbrellasi Where is my wife waiting? Can I phone beyond time?  One bitter laugh from you is enough to reduce everything to nothing. There's a path aside from heaven's. But my only option is to be liquidated hereJ The wings of the nine-headed bird"^ are a dimly discernible ladder. Rungs mount up toward a longer cavern. An iron hand of lightening reaches out from inside. Gouges out the channels of five rivers. From inside me five fissures ooze out. Come, you doctors. Impostors. Reality. Slaughter houses. I myself rip off and give you my thundering genitals!  Twenty-eight arms hold me from behind. Twenty-eight voices take turns telling me to SHUT UPJ Dejectedly I fall to the ground. Wearily seek to come to grips with my uprooting. Silently I count the green hands shooting up from my roots. From one to a hundred  •^A red duck-like bird of Chinese legends. Said to be very unlucky, originally ten-headed. A dog bit off the tenth and anyone splashed with its blood will suffer catastrophe.  226 Boundless lines of my palm spread out to the plain. I sink down into them. Don't even know which are my own. I just feel the voices of the sons grow old in the all-encompassing haze- Peaks and ridges are settled down like cows. Prophets clutching secrets to success swim out of udders  I just feel that the world of man is so lonely. The land within the Great Wall is filled by kneeling stone statues with broken right arms. Tears accumulate into Yellow River sand. The hot-spring building crowds close to the mountain wall. Stinking hot water slithers down spiral stairs. Pouring into the entrance of a towering vault. Buses rust before the door. Wind chimes whimper. Foam breasts conceal daggers. Two large worms burrow out of a man's nostrils, entwine and copulate  Silently I count the inns I've overnighted in during my life. From one to a hundred. Remote ancestors. Progenitors. Great-grandfathers. Mothers. The made-up opera faces of each dynasty all flash through my mind. At the end I discover Allah Fahweh, the prophet of Ba People Village, showing his green hand. Disguised as a customer groping his way into an underground brothel  YOUR HAND SIGNALS AROUSE MY PASSION SURVIVING TREES OVERGROWN WITH VINES SEARCHING FOR LONG-DESIRED BRAMBLE THICKETS PIERCE CRACKS IN THE EARTH PIERCE DOOR LINTELS PIERCE BED SHEETS PIERCE FORESTS AND GRASSLANDS A CONCEALED UNIVERSE OF AMBER'S ELECTRICAL WAVES FLOW ON  227 FOREVER STIR UP THE BLOOD CYCLE TWO MIGHTY BOWS SHOOT AT EACH OTHER TWO SEMI-CIRCLES BITE INTO EACH OTHER OUTSIDE TIGHTLY WRAPPED SUMMER UNUSUALLY HOT SPRAY HEAVENLY BODIES SPEED UP IN THEIR TURNING THE WHITE DOG SWALLOWS THE ELEPHANT THE ROOF TILES BREAK STARS INTO PIECES ALL MANKIND FALLS INTO HELL ALL HELL FALLS INTO HEAVEN SMASHING OUT GOD'S BRAINS WHO'S DANCING MODERN DANCES IN THE GREASED PAN ASS GYRATING LIKE ISADORA DUNCAN'S LOUD APPLAUSE YOU'RE DEITY YOU'RE DEMON YOU'RE A TANG-DYNASTY DIEHARD OR COFFEE SHOP WAITRESS ALL LIVING THINGS ARRANGED IN A ROW ABOVE THE EVERLASTING ABYSS UNCROSSED LEGS FORMING AN ENDLESS URINE-SOAKED CORRIDOR OF HISTORY WAITING FOR THE TERRIFYING PILLAR OF FLESH TO BE RAMMED STRAIGHT IN!  The soil has been tilled my girl your entire body drunkenly limp ovaries and seed in turmoil I say I love you I love you I love you until I suddenly recognize you as my mother until I lift away your ninth layer of skin and discover Nu Wa sobbing hiding within the eardrum-shattering thunder I seize the filthy genealogy and howl wildly I desperately thrash my lower torso like a swarm of angry bees the curse of eighty-eight generations of forefathers stings me. I shout: "Allah Fahwehl You seducing thiefI"  The prophet falls back slipping into the inner room. Flashing a green hand  228 6891 AD, the sole witness dies. Only in the black leather book. The Great Craftsman's Fall, is this crime recorded; 1937 AD, the Second World War breaks out. Japanese planes bomb the Yangtse river basin, the Ba'People Village's records archive is reduced to ashes, the whereabouts of The Great Craftsman's Fall is not known; 1944 AD, the Chinese army leaves for the South Asia front, along the way I mistakenly enter an empty house. The Great Craftsman's Fall is recovered. While I read I eat three packages of magic cookies, from then on I was mute for five thousand years.  When this all ended, my hair was already white my face covered with dust. All night I sit alone on a park bench watching the wind break off the nearly dead brittle branches  I shift the left-over stump of the leg hold my breath as I endure last night, this night... again the dawn breaks  I am expecting a beggar to hop out from behind the bench, fierce-voiced, and take all my life savings including the medal that cost me the shank of my leg  He can relieve the pain of my wounds. Any enemy can use perfect means of revenge to relieve the pain of my wounds You too, settle old scores, pour poisoned liquor down my throat Even though you wear an elegant top hat I still know there's a bull's horn in the back of your head  Dull-witted childhood is such a joy! You turned into a bull then, taunted me Later we taunted each other Both suffered until I sat alone all night on a park bench watching the city of death north south east west indistinguishable  When this all ended you'd not revealed yourself No one showed their faces I can just stare at the worn threshold beneath the hill of the rock garden opposite It seems so like my old home's  230  At the edge of the stairs to my childhood an old woman sits north facing south Sadly she plucks out a tongue the size of an egg-plant she gazes fixedly by the light of the moon  Carved on it are your sins and the history of a famous city  When she stuffs it back in her mouth from beyond the high walls comes the poet's wild song the day is breaking  231 • tV-:;  X, <m Poets behind bars China LIAO YIWU In .March 1990. the dissident Chinese poet Liao V'iwu. aged 31. was arrested on accu.sation of publishing 'subversive poetrv". Over two years later he languishes in gaol in Chongquing, still without trial or sentence. Liao and a number of others were arrested after the Chinese authorities seized a video-tape recording of readings by a number of young poets from Sichuan Province which included a reading by Liao of his poem "Slaughter", reproduced below from that video. The government claims that the poem directly refers to the events in Tiananmen Square in June 1989, although friends of Liao Yiwu have been freed. One of Sichuan's most well-known and respected young poets. Liao Yiwu had come under attack from the government at least once before when his poem. "The Cit>' of Death", published in 1987. was criticised for being too abstract and pessimistic. His major inriuences are said to range from American poets such as Sylvia Plath and .Alcn Ginsberg, to Dante's Iri/emo. Slaughter Part III translated by .Michael Day .And another sort of slaughter takes place at Utopia's core The prime minister catches cold, the people must cough: martial law declared again and again. The toothless machinery of the state rolls towards those who have the courage to resist the sickness. Unarmed thugs fall by the thousands: iron-clad professional killers swim in a sea of blood, set fires beneath tightly closed windows, wipe their army regulation boots with the skirts of dead maidens. They're incapable of trembling.  ' 1  -^  These heartless robots are incapable of trembling! Their electronic brains possess only one programme: an official document full of holes 'In the name of the Fatherland slaughter the constitution! Replace the constitution, slaughter righteousness! In the name of mothers throttle children! In the name of children sodomise fathers! In the name of wives murder husbands! In the name of urbanitcs blow up cities! Open fire! Fire! Upon the elderly! Upon the children! Open fire on women! On students. Workers. Teachers. Open fire on pedlars! Open Fire! Blast a'^ay! Take aim on those angn.' faces. Horrified faces. Convulsing faces. Empty all barrels on despairing and peaceful faces! Fire away to your heart's content! These faces that come on like a tide and in the next moment are dead are so beautiful! These faces chat will be going up to heaven and down to hell are so beautiful! Beautiful. .A beauty that turns men into strange beasts! A beauty that lures men on to ravage, vilify, possess, despoil! Do away with all beauty! Do away with all fiowers! Forests. Campuses. Love. Guitars and pure clean air! Do away with those ideas that enter into error! Open Fire! Blast airay! It feels so goorl! Just like smoking a joint. Going to the toilet. Back on the base giving the old lady a good fuck! Open Fin! All barrels! Blast away! Feels good! So good! Smash open a skull! Fry the skin on his head to a crisp! Make the brain gush out. T h e soul gush out.  Splash on the overpass. Gatehouse. Railings. .Splash on the road! Splash fo«ard.s the sl«y where they become stars! E.scaped .stars! .Stars with two human legs! Sky and earth have reversed positions. .Mankind wears bright, shining hats. Bright shining metal helmets. .A troop of soldiers comes charging out of the moon. Opni fire! AII barrels! Blast away! It feels so good! .Mankind and stars fall. Flee tojrethcr. C-an't make one out from the other. them up to the clouds! C.' into the cracks of the earth and into their flesh and waste them! Bl()«- another hole in the soul! Blow another hole in the stars! Souls dress in red shirts! Souls with white belts! Souls wearing running shoes doing gymnastics to radio! Where can you run to.' \\"e will dig you out of the mud. Tear you out of the flesh. Scoop you out of the air and water. (Jpalfire!Blast asray! It feels good! So good! The slaughter takes place in three worlds. On the wings of birds. In the stomachs offish. Carn.- it out in the fine dust In countless living organisms. Leap! Hmsl! Fly! Run! Freedom feels so good! Snuffing out freedom feels so good! Power will be triumphant for ever. Will be passed down from generation to generation for ever. Freedom will also come back from the dead. Ir will come back to life in generation after generation. Like that dim light just before the dawn. .\'o. There's no light. .A.t L'topia's core there can never be light. Our hearts are pitch black. Black and scalding. Like a corpse incinerator. A trace of the phantoms of the burned dead.  We will e,\ist. The government that dominates us will exist. Daylight comes quickly. It feels so good. The butchers are still ranting! Children. Children your bodies all cold. Children, your hands grasping stones. Let's go home. Brothers and sisters, your shattered bodies littering the earth. Let's go home. We walk noiselessly. Walk three feet above the ground. All the time forward, there must be a place to rest. There must be a place where sounds of gunfire and explosions cannot be heard. We so wish to hide within a stalk of grass. A leaf. Uncle, .•\untie. Grandpa. Granny. Daddy. Mummy. How much farther till we're homer We have no home. Everyone knows. Chinese people have no home. Home is a comforting desire. Let us die in this desire OPEN FIRE. BUST AWAY. FIRE! Let us die in freedom. Righteousness. Equality-. Universal love. Peace, in these vague desires. Stand on the horizon. Attract more of the living to death! It rains. Don't know if it is rain or transparent ashes. Run quickly. Mummy! Run quickly, son! Run quickly, elder brother! Run quickly, little brother! The butchers will not let up. An even more terrifving dav is approaching. OPE.V FIRE! BL.'^TAWAY! FIRE! I T FEELS GOOD! FEELS SO G O O D ! . . .  233  Slaughter - Pan N Cry Cry Cry Crycrycrycrycrycrycry While you still have not been surrounded and annihilated, while you still have strength left to suck milk, crycrycry. Let your sobs cast you off, fuse into radio, television, radar, give repeated testimony of the slaughter Let your sobs cast you off, fuse into plant life, semi-vegetable life and micro-organisms, blossom intoflowerafterflower,year after year mourning the dead, mourning yourself. Let your sobs be distorted, twisted, be annihilated by the tumult of sacrosanct battle. The butchers come from the cast of the city, from the west of the city, from the south and north of the cir>'. .Metal helmets glint in the light. They're singing... Putrid, sweltering summer, people and ghosts sing... Don't go to the east, don't go to the west, don't go to the south and north. We stand in the midst of brilliance but all people are blind We stand on a great road but no-one is able to walk We stand in the midst of a cacophony but all are mute We stand in the midst of heat and thirst but all refuse to drink  You offer a bounty on yourself, find out yourself, you say you were mistaken, this accursed epoch is all wrong! .And yet you're crying. You are stamped into meat pie, you cry From meat pie you're trampled into meat, you cry. A dog licks up the minced meat, you cry inside a dog's bcllv! CRY! CRY! CRY! In this historically unprecedented slaughter only the spawn of dogs can survive.  Cuba MARIA ELENA CRUZ VARELA The prize-winning Cuban poet .Maria Elena Cruz Varela was sentenced to rwo years in prison for 'illegal associarion' and 'disrespect' after a summary trial in .November 1991. The charges relate to her work for Criterio .Akernativo. a group of intellectuals who have been calling for economic and poliricul reform, just before her arrest, she had been subjected to an "acto de repudio" when a crowd of people came to her house, shouted verbal abuse at her, dragged her down the stairs by her hair and stuffed Criterio .Alternative leaflets in her mouth. From El Angel Agotado (The E.xhausted .Angel)  People with no understanding of the rimes, people in the midst of calamity, people who plot to shoot down the sun. Vou can only cry, you're srill crying, crycrycrycrycrycrycrycrycry! CRYCRY! CRY! You've been smothered to death, baked to death, your whole body is on fire! .And yet you are crying. You get up on the stage and act out a farce, you're paraded before the crowds in the streets, and yet you're crying. Your eyeballs e.xplode, scald the surrounding crowd, and yet you're crying.  translated by .Mandy Garner The stone-throtcer 's poem I am throwing stones against the deaf ear. On the cusp of t\vo worlds. This is loneliness and its crackling echoes. I am signalling both to the parient fool on the hill and to the poor madwoman who is patching up her grief on the park bench. Through her crumblingfingers.Like a broken weaver. The remnants ooze. The final chronicle of the abandonment. I tell her to wait for me.  234  TOMJSLATIONS:  235 THE CHINESE DEPARTMENT (1984)  The Chinese department is a great well-baited river A professor and a group of lecturers are casting nets in the shallows The netted fish When brought up on the bank become teaching assistants, later They become tour guides to Qu Yuan and Li Bai^ and still later Cast their own nets Those who want to consume Wild Grass and By the Flowers^ Deposit Lu xun^ in a bank and eat the interest  Be a great poet in ancient times leading a gang of lesser poets to write poetry Write upon the rock which Wang Wei* wrote of In term-end fishing interrogations, foolish carp Are slapped with exams and quickly stumble out the door  The teacher told us to be great men We must eat their leftovers and recite their coughs Ya-wei wants to be a great man wants to work together with the great men of antiquity Everyday he coughs up all sorts of sounds from the library To the dormitory. Afterwards he simply coughs non-stop Poet Hu Yu is a mischief-maker But he isn't very good at roller skating, so On his long hair he often slides into places where female students congregate and uses his cheeks To sing of evening breezes blowing over Peng Hu bay ^ Two famous poets: Qu Yuan, 340-277 B.C.; Li Bai (also written as Li Po), A.D. 701-762. ^ Wild Grass, a collection of prose poetry by Lu Xun. " China's most influential writer of literature in western form, 18811936. " A famous Chinese poet, A.D. 701-761.  236 Twenty-four year old Brother Ao Hasn't written a poem in twenty-four years But is a poem himself Forever loving a girl from five meters distance For not remembering if Han Yu'' was Chinese or Russian Brother Ao tragically dropped a grade. He wanted to escape But feared that when he crawled up on a Hongkong beach The police would immediately haul him away to a classical Chinese language test  Everyday after getting out of bed Wan Xia's problem Is whether to keep eating or Never to eat again ,  Together with his girlfriend after selling all his old clothes  J  The signal to drink often buzzes in his head  i Little Mian Yang the sworn brother of us all After taking a month to read half a page in a text book went to the cafeteria I  Picked up his food and also picked a fight with a cook The Chinese department's like this Students worship the ancients and the blackboards by day And by night worship the silver screen or just as easily  1  Chase women through the streets  Poet Yang Yang is always planning To marry a girl he's just met, always Gliding up to the food voucher gambling table with a shark face This thug is acquainted with four cooks But to this day still doesn't know the writing class teacher ^ Famous essayist and poet, A.D. 768-824.  237  He once had the brilliant idea that Knowledge is a book and books are women Women are tests And each man had better make the grade  The Chinese department flows on like this Teachers order students to think freely, command Students not to talk nonsense at assemblies of any size Twenty-two rules of military conduct requires that professors urge students To bring forth new ideas, bear fruit And to not soil final exam papers  The Chinese department also studies foreign literature Primarily Baudelaire and Gorki. One evening A flustered looking lecturer raced out of the toilet He shouted: Students Disperse immediately, there's a modernist inside  The Chinese department flows on like this Like the waves of urine Ya-wei pisses on the dry earth Following piles of sealed exams for graduation off into the distance  Published in: Macho Man; 1985-1985 Poetry Selections  Li Yawei  (underground journal), Sichuan, 1986, pp. 3-4; - An Overview of Chinese Modernist Poets, Tongji University Press, Shanghai, September 1988, pp. 101-103; - An Appreciation Dictionary of Chinese Exploratory Verse, Hebei People's Publishing House, Shijiazhuang, August 1989, pp. 556-558; - After Misty Poetry  A Selection of Chinese Avant Garde  Poetry, Nankai University Press, Tianjin, January 1990, pp. 53-56; - Poetry Press (newspaper format), Hefei, Anhui province, 21 October 1986, p. 2.  i  238 HARD MEN (summer 1984)  Ever since we were pushed aside by the summer by yesterday by sofas and girlfriends shoved out the door Like a forehead into the naked world of autumn We've been outside belching and putting up with winds and frosts Running into walls, walking thorny paths We are still watching watching  the sun the moon  Excite^i about this pair of colons We're still beating bitterly at the day making surprise attacks on the night We, these stirred up bottles of white lightening this herd of bolting long-legged wine glasses Basically we're Porcupines with poems dangling from our waists we're dubious characters Submerged drifting masts (  We've seen august shrivel up and die on a branch, we've seen Women in mirrors, admirable things  I  We've seen death, still want to see it, and therefore  ^  Accept a bribe of red lips With proud anti-missile missiles take aim at the head rising in the sky We file out through the mountain passes of Li Bai's and Mao Zedong's poetry We file out through the Chinese department, enter life  ,  With heads and teeth, with arbitrary decisions Qi-gong^ and obscenities contradict the door to love  ^ A method of exercise incorporating meditation, breathing and positional exercise which regulate the body's life force.  239 We'll hit women in their faces With sonnets by Petrarch Attack with UFOs Smash one or two school presidents and department heads on their craniums Pound strangers' faces into the dirt Compel the women to pull out the love belted tightly under their trousers  Proudly, of our own will, we drop out of school Smash mummy and daddy on those damn text books Make dates with an insatiable desire for poverty, hesitantly we pawn our wrist watches Let mainstreet look askance at me Let's be above fooling about together by fooling about together Cut out grief and indignation with grief and indignation And then self-righteously behave yourself  We are all hunters but surrounded by wolves stalking us you become a tragic wolf by shooting at yourself We lust obscenely after poverty We're slovenly and lovely We hike up our skirts We're all men  But we still hesitate and nod Like our foreheads Swaying like autumn We take off on long journeys to become Li Bai and Robinson Crusoe And live communally, roam With poetry Jammed into traffic pavilions we sleep together in the middle of mainstreet Feel queasy together in our stomachs Barbarically lonely savagely silent together with the barren mountains  240  we, this herd of sabre-toothed tigers from different forests these cobras these tubes of colorful oils these whales trying to beach ourselves We fully realize that history is a broad, level table cloth and among the chessmen upon it life is organized murder It' s the sun and the moon black and white men women and men  We know we're smarter than the books, but we only have a tiny bit of courage left and a stubbornness we don't regret in the least We know too how awful we are how easy it is for us to crash, dive and burn We're so easily soiled by our names left forgotten on bed by breakfast tossed out of doors by a deep sleep abandoned by women in dreams We're merely life's mercenaries our own rivals in love  We're unreliable, not dazed We're dangerous, we're poisonous perfume we're OFOs love letters of unknown origin a piece of doggerel written by plain people  Often we suspect we're probably the best poets The same as distrust every one of your body's organs You must believe yourself a great poet Just like you believe yourself a most excellent yellow-skinned fellow  241  Go and umpteen times toss away cigarette butts Go and take close looks at women Go, and along with the roads choke the whole mountain along with the trackers for the boats pull the Yangtse straight with the Yangtse force the sea back Set out and see our vast world see the wasteland history has left to us Let's go my hard men  Published in: Macho Man (underground poetry journal), Chengdu, Sichuan province, December 1984, pp. 1-8; - Modern Poetry Internal Exchange Materials (underground' journal), Chengdu, January 1985, pp. 48-49; - Macho Man; 1984-1985 Poetry Selections  Li Yawei  (underground journal), 1986, pp. 1-2; - Guandong Literature monthly, Liaoyuan, Jilin province, April 1986 (October 1987, awarded magazine's top prize for poetry published in 1986); - A Selection of Exploratory Poetry by Third Generation Poets, China Arts Alliance Publishing Company, Beijing, December 1988, pp. 12-20.  242  THE CORNERED BEAST (August, 1985)  In flight he feels free  His blood vessels follow the run of mountain ranges and become a great roaring, convulsing river His eyeballs follow the roll of a bird in flight ,  His feet are hijacked by a pair of mankind's shoes Everyday war breaks out in his head, his brains explode and rise up as mushroom clouds Hung in markets his lungs and his liver are the most desolate unsaleable commodities under the sun  •  His chopped entrails are fought over by flies and mosquitoes  i  His heart is cooked, sliced up to become a side dish for a solitary foreigner drinking and thinking of home His body needs a sound heart, he forces himself into a hospital Like in a fight he takes a fierce punch A pair of hands strap him tightly to a sick bed A tube is placed in his left arm, his right is needled and injected at will And unceasingly stamped by official embossed steel seals  He finally runs away In flight he feels free  He is moving towards giant boulders and deep ravines, towards forests gulping great breathe of hurricanes Towards lofty mountain ranges and desolate open spaces He runs on his four limbs, uses fur in place of the burden of clothing Along the way he castes off his helmet and armour; hopes, glasses, women, sex, love all gone Without the slightest hesitation he discards history, memory, imagination, language and facial expressions  243  He becomes an It and grows horns and hooves Behind it is the rattle of firing bolts of hunters' rifles Its ears press tightly back against its neck, its tail curls into its crotch fishing for life while in flight  Its fur is cheap its life will not always be to mankind's taste because of the juice in its meat Its hopes are anti-hopes are boring his happiness is not worth bearing on its agile animal feet Its horn and gray fur, its dull trade mark But it can't change the wounds in its body once again It doesn't ponder muddled problems: dogs doing slave labour cattle eating straw, men eating food god eating clouds It just wants to howl long and hard at the sky And produces a solitary resulting impulse: run  while running it feels alive and profoundly experiences freedom  It becomes a black shadow like a vision of nature wildly skimming over open country Behind it a bundle of sunlight's arrows pursue and shoot forests and the black night fly up from the earth The muffled corpses from the death knell spread outward to the frontiers of sight Finally it stands at the predestined place Hunters arrive like rays of light, bullets arrive like rays of light, a brilliant life like rays of light concentrated on this resplendent moment The vast wilderness, it raises its head and comes to understand unparalleled sorrow: I can not run, I'll never need to run  244  It takes tight hold of the handle of the life of mankind with a long drawn-out howl The It becomes a he while in flight he deeply felt the magnificence of life  yet At his back is a wall A protective screen fixed to his body isolating grasslands and mountain ranges from dreams His blood vessels and energy paths are jumbled together with electrical and iron wires Houses are his skin Windows are necklaces for his freed head  Oh precipitous life of man  He can't shake it, can't transcend it, and everything is so colossal and without even one crack The large buildings overlook him, envelop him The streets kidnap his steps And in each office is an ill-tempered clock waiting to strike him with its sound The times are helplessly drunk down, sat out, exterminated by convention Each weekend he is purchase-ordered by a phone call afterwards together with the dusk he is killed by friends and women All the different art forms only cause his yearning to suddenly rise up like a chimney Cause his dark breath to smoke himself into a higher state In dreams the spiritual loftiness, these elevations above sea level and these high buildings always toss him off the planet He lives on the top of a building as one would live on the tip of a rocket  !45  He yearns to withdraw, retreat is the most beautiful form of flight  He rushes down from the highest point in the city He feels stairs attracting his feet like the breath of a wild beast He hopes the stairs descend deep into the earth, deep into remote antiquity deep into his origins (all running organisms know their final destination, there were they hold their heads high in terror before setting out) He still feels he is running in a forest His fur brushes against brambles and past, behind there is a roar of rifles being cocked  Published in: The Literary Wind of Ba Country (half-yearly), Fuling, Sichuan province, (Liao yiwu, editor) 1986 #1, pp. 18-21; - China literary monthly, Beijing, October 1986, pp. 43-44.  246  AN ANCIENT FRIEND (1986)  Are you dead, Tao Yuan-ming^ Afterwards your poetry was cloth-bound by a commercial print house Your poems are dissected by old men in universities But my poetry will push all this aside Entitled as a district magistrate my verse is commanding armies to march south  In the south that glistening white desolate moon Is opening up earth's wine cellar, the sounds of dogs and chickens The scent of the peach blossom garden^ while cooking A beautiful simple song brews a strong dark night  Tao Yuan-ming ah Tao Yuan-ming I have no money tonight This evening my lines are searching for the fisherman by the river Wanting to strip off a worn-out imagination to exchange for a braised fish  Often when alone drinking cold wine i find The braised fish come carrying nets circling me Old Tao, for a long time now braised fish hasn't been a dish to eat while drinking strong liquor Now even those who love us only drink beer My verse stops at the riverside and is weeping after antiquity Published in: Ba-Shu Modern Poets, (underground journal, Liao Yiwu, editor) Fuling, Sichuan province. Spring 1987, p. 14; - Guandong Literature monthly, Liaoyuan, Jilin province, April 1987, p. 43; - After Misty Poetry  A Selection of Chinese Avant Garde  Poetry, Nankai University Press, Tianjin, January 1990, pp. 57-58. ^A famous pastoral poet, 372-427 A.D.. "^An earthly paradise as described in Tao's poetry.  247  CROWDED WORU> (1987)  Autumn is too narrow, people can't keep their feet Always squeezed out by something Stand on the dock watching others come down off the boat Fit quickly into the crowd Watch the stone steps keep their composure Slip suddenly into the water and hinting at A way out  The dock is anchored to autumn A column of geese is edged out of the sky •j  On the road home  <  you are pushed to one side by your own imagination You must live out the whole afternoon alone living in this view, from far away  Published inj Guandong Literature monthly, Liaoyuan, Jilin prov., June 1987, p, 8; - Author literary monthly, Changchun, Jilin prov., April 1988, p. 38; - A Survey of Chinese Modernist Poets 1986-1988 (book), Tongji University Press, Shanghai, September 1988, p. 497.  248  TBE INN for my drinking buddies and my lover  I kick down the doors of all inns with my feet For years I've wanted to fall into the hollow of your hand Innkeeper  I want there to be an inseparable relationship between us I want to make love to you amid the dim sensations My drinking is merely A process of wounding Afterwards The wound will quietly recall many things  You should install freedom in a wine-cup too There should be Something in you that is rapidly exchanged Innkeeper At least you understand what giddy is The giddiness Leans against the other side of life Long ago Nothing could smother the smell of blood Duty-bound it pours out  Published in: Author literary monthly, Changchun, Jilin prov., April 1988, p. 39; - A Survey of Chinese Modernist Poets 1986-1988, Tongji University Press, Shanghai, September 1988, pp. 497-498.  249  IDLE WORDS WHILE DRINKING  I want to leave me Along with my bones I slide down Well, god dammit, I feel a little more relaxed  A lot of hands lift me up For a long, long time I open my eyes and see A guy in the crowd, his head raised, looking over at me Holding out an empty bottle  I think What have I been drinking The place of my birth Has long been absolutely drained  Published in: Author literary monthly, Changchun, Jilin prov., April 1988, p. 39; - A Survey of Chinese Modernist Poets 1986-1988 (book), Tongji University Press, Shanghai, September 1988, p. 498.  250  WHII£ I WAS STANDING  If you'd only dare take one look at me I'd take a good straight look at you, woman Ever since I was born until now, I've been idle with nothing to do  Do you know what I want to do as I stand here ' i  What do you suppose a person's greatest sorrow is Certainly not that feeling of loneliness while standing at the top of a pagoda I'm sad And I stand this way  ^  Because there's a thing about this world  i Would you want to use the old ways of the others We can wait until evening and walk in the outskirts of the city When we've wandered into a private accord we'11 stand by the river face to face Would you like to let the moon get a hand in  The countryside around and about is vast Vast these outskirts are Because you're not there  Published in: Author literary monthly, Changchun, Jilin prov., April 1988, p. 40; - A Survey of Chinese Modernist Poets 1986-1988, Tongji University Press, Shanghai, September 1988, p. 499.  251  THE FLIGHT (April 1989)  The wings of opium passed over the ocean and finished the last reconnaissance The smallest black spot in the mind circles in the ether of the sky overhead The people have already stopped harvesting The limitless worries of wheat in the field are aimed silently at the sky Collective memories closed on the individual after nightfall  I am still he who travelled farthest I crossed a great river on a horse and drift in the dry wind And beneath the stars I crossed a sheet of paper, carrying the characters of the written language with me and its school Linking it finally to a hand signal at the end of the road  I've considered everybody and everything, finished off my time up north in a glance At the small entrances to the stair of my eyelids, gigantic pupils are turning toward deep night Shooting out memories of past events, crossing the great plain under the starry sky Since the train passes through my eyes, it is departing from the last station Drumming a rhythm along a fragrance, the steam whistle blows among the flowers In the seats passengers are all your innocent tears dripping south  This train has no way of stopping, because it is nothing else aside from noise It blew through fragrant powder, it's quite simply the blooming of a flower One woman rises from the earth, after she is full grown she reaches the heavens She knows area is equal to death, the volume and the memory must be  252  brought in before the night falls She has already seen through herself, so she can come in and out of skin at will Because skin is only one atmosphere around the person Like the south it has never been a place, just a sound  The celestial body is moving ever closer now, i ride a horse up onto the star's glow A girl is passing through her loveliest age, halts and thinks of me A beautiful girl is a colour going from one place to another At eighteen she thinks of rainbows, then passes beyond fragrance And I am able to do nothing but come down out of the heavens and love her  And a dove swifter than all other doves, becomes a flower of colour Passing through books of poetry beyond the atmosphere, I saw the sky ahead too blue Because water of the sea was beginning to soar up, rising to the sky At this time I let myself go, like one left hand letting go of another, and take hold of my soul Drawing a vast stretch of skin, I washed in the sky Blasts of wind folded it over, bound into lines upon ocean waves And then they too let go, spraying the Pacific at the sandy beaches Freckling the sky like a child  Now the fish also let loose and form the hub of the oceans  Those people who love me are wings For imagination is a flower, and blooming goes from one place to another Those people who remember me Fly above the treetops upside down at dusk or fall onto islands Those people who keep a lookout for- me have actually gone beyond reading  253  For every time the horse loses its footing on a word it creates a chance encounter To fall off a horse this way is simply a happy fate Like a flower blooming, it is quite simply a scent that has spread wings  At your place of origin, along the pupils of the liquor bottles the cellar's look is rolling Showing that alcohol doesn't get itself drunk, sixty-five proof won't numb the fifty-seven Alcohol is just one of those things that fly off on their own But you can't lower your head and stare down, this isn't any different from the assiduous study of texts Page by page the waves of the ocean are flipped open Reading sail upon sail from the strait to the cape  Land on the opposite shore and you won't die You're thinking of heavenly things, you have to only think of how high the clouds are And it equals riding a horse It sends you farther than turning the pages of a book one by one Probably your fall off the horse happened between the words and the lines Because you ducked your head and looked down, it may have taken shape in a script But it isn't important, you're totally illiterate, even wanting to die isn't easy  I am still the one who travelled the farthest Because after renouncing isolated entanglements circling in the air became very desirable Just like the returning of wheat in autumn fields to the sky I gallop like a horse, like the long hairs of the wind trailing the whitest clouds  Just like the view of the autxunn seen by people riding the wings of opium, driving the great ether wind and climbing up to the heights to gather it in  Published in: Modern Han Poetry (underground journal), Beijing, 1991 Summer, pp. 21-23.  255  WE (September 1989, at Wu-dang Mountain)  Our camels change shape, when it comes down to it Our line is fake now, we are still strugglers We cross deserts and streams to learn culture We are reflected on to the coast by a mirage Plain features, easily forgotten or caressed We are drowned by feelings, let loose from the contradictions today Happiness, concerned over the final goal, joins up with us Brings up the rear in a horse drawn carriage  We are the flowers of our youth, bunched together Learning from and confusing each other Extending along the vines, often led To become part of the masses and experienced men Fading away in the desert, and refracted out by the sea Three years ago, cheeky and engaged to be married We came by boat, inquired into life and death, explored philosophies A force that could have split beunboo We mastered the essentials, crossed snow-capped mountains and the Ganges Into another person's home  We come up from the sea, we must find housing We come from the desert, we must have food and clothing We come from two sides, enter realms and seek the forbidden, knock at doors asking guidance Having crossed over winter and ice, we enter the very fibre of the skin Holding weapons of despair, the sighing organs Comprehend, have a deep understanding of the gist of it We come from the antipodes of labour and harvest We come from the two sides of flower and fruit Through study on our own, we become the people Our camels are reflected onto an island  :56  Our vessels are projected into books And become phenomena, vague and indistinct Mutually replaceable, mutually imagined Moving straight onward, creating logic We assess the explorations and develop in another direction Trickling across creeks, swajnps, ascending onto The Great Way We have fixed plans and miss the point by miles  I  We come to the city from the antipodes of food and clothing We come onto the street from the two sides of good and bad  I  Alone, lean, we meet and want to drink We hate the lateness of our meeting, by marriage brought together  '  By technology driven apart  }  These three years, we learned from the past, fell in love  1  Died off in new places, and beg in the old Three years later, we go into the West, at the forefront of knowledge clogging the streets, definitions change Thinking it through, our numbers increase, we can't be depleted  We come from the antipodes of one and two, carrying poetry and knives We meet, and love reduces our number by one We pass through a city of pagodas, are miraged out to sea Never to return Again we come from the antipodes of one and two Diligent in our studies, coughing up blood in our youth Industrious, self-improving, with talent to spare Forever inquiring after learning and childbirth, striking the ovum onto stone  We come to the village from the antipodes of seed and fruit Exchange experiences, approve of each other We come to the market town from the 'antipodes of buying and selling We disappear in the exchange, become pearls  257  Become her floral handkerchief, and she striding out in front of her husband The first-loved and remembered by her An unending stream of traffic, restraint, we judge others by their appearances  ^l^1  V We come up from the surface We suffer a sudden inter-weave on the antipodes of longitude and latitude We throw ourselves into weaving, form patterns, raise our heads and attain love Wearing flowered clothing we throw ourselves into revolutions, and meet up with The Leader We wander round, cross borders, and earn ourselves another Though we might only be walking on the street It's also a product of dreeuns, nothing is real or unreal Anyway you look at it, all are characters of the imagination Walking outside, yet sticking precisely to contours of thought  Published in: Modern Han Poetry (underground journal), Beijing, summer 1991, pp. 24-26.  TRANSLATIONS: ZHOU LUNYOU  259  The Solitary Pine  A historian Strolls alone on the high plateau Time has played a joke on him He has lost the way home He stands on a precipice staring off into the distance The stars take the place of his stern gaze All that remains is a clear head He continues in his undertaking Writing his life into chronicles The rings of the wheel of time Are a history that will never decay  - page 43, Poetry Monthly, October 1981, Beijing.  260  Spring Festival  I'm a honey bee Flying out of a traditional Oriental painting. On each festival day along my way. From mugwort leaf and calamus I gather honey in bitter delicate fragrances I collect a trace of poetic mood From a mooncake as round as the moon And a moon as round as a mooncake I gather a fulfilling desire From the scattered oblique shadows of chrysanthemums And cornel, I harvest a homesick melody Carrying so many stories and legends I descend upon your pistil And gather a little pollen To make a spring of all colors  - pp. 53-54, Feitian literary monthly, August 1982, Lanzhou, Gansu province; - page 51, A Selection of Lyric Poetry by Contemporary University Students, October 1987, Sichuan University Publishing House, Chengdu, Sichuan province.  261  The Black Statue - for a young road worker laying asphalt  The black solution Gushes up out of your hands Your work-clothes are spattered with pitch Even the sunlight turns black sculpts the expression on your face black Like this solution, boiling hot  Reality is grim When automobile wheels spin in the mire And history is compelled to slither in the mud The age sent out a summons You stepped up And accepted the laborer's card with both hands you took on a lofty mission  We have never joined in the designing of roads ,  Only names from our parent's generation are among the road construction crew's  (  When the footsteps of the young march forward treading on the shoulders of their forebearers Do they complain that the road is bumpy Or set to work and pave it flat You chose the latter  Under the heavy rhythm of the road roller A layer of tar, a layer of crushed stone presses slowly forward This is today's addition to yesterday Pave the rough road into the future flat An all-weather highway Stretches out of the hardship in your hands.  262  Looking at the level surface you let out the hint of a smile The laugh lines unfold The smoothness of a freeway Vehicle after vehicle speeds by your side the wheels remember your name Horns sound  blare out your salute  - pp. 34-36, Poetry Monthly, February 1984, Beijing; - Stars poetry monthly, April 1983, Chengdu, Sichuan province; - pp. 467-469, 300 Lyric Poems by Contemporary Youth (Volume 2 ) , Guizhou People's Publishing House, May 1985, Guiyang, Guizhou province.  263  The White Wolf  The white wolf is dancing the foxtrot Drawn-out howls on the ridge of the roof I am never able to dodge its long long tail Waving a riddle as if it's reminding me of something hinting at something Not one stalk of grass is growing on the bald pastureland for the flock of sheep I can't keep my hair Yet it still stares at me that way Stares Have you passed this sort of night Shaking the snowflakes the frostwork or a I  moonlight-like white coming in from your earliest consciousness Think about it Not yesterday Not last year Earlier and still earlier Imagine this sort of a night In a place you love where you're a child It's a house Really dark Distantly I see that white wolf take a bite of me through the ceiling Kept at a distance by a thick wall it  ^  wounds me Each written character comes to bite me Every single  1  sentence comes to bite me and leaves teeth marks behind Once more you try to remember what you saw that night Snow-white walls float up into the air Four chalk-white walls drift up Your cradle is like a boat Imagine that you are an infant suckling at your  .  mother's breast What did you see at the moment you opened your  I  eyes Now you push open that door You walk in Lamplight knocks me over The zebra-striped roof sways An impression A beautiful shape The white wolf has come up from the sea up onto the shore The whole world starts to rock becoming a pliable body Isn't the  '  cradle being pushed by that pair of hands Mommy isn't by my side Now please use your own hands and gently peal off the sea's skin The animal beneath won't bite That two-headed animal will definitely not bite you This evening mother has been gobbled up by it Now please try to push the two heads apart with your hands Don't say whose face you see The white wolf fox-trotting on the ridge of the roof is far off The long tail has broken off in the wind inch by inch becoming hummingbirds flying up and down An ancient pagoda is planted at the centre of a lake inundated by blue light Who will garner those ripe wind-chimes Those sweet tinklings are about to sprout and leave that swamp are going to bud and push up out of that bog  264  Contemporary Chinese Exploratory Poetry, (underground poetry journal, Yang Shun-li editor) Fuling, Sichuan province, July 1985, pp. 11-13; Chinese Literature monthly, Beijing, October 1986, page 49; A Collection of Exploratory Poetry by Third Generation Poets, Beijing, China Literary Alliance Publishing House, December 1988, pp. 161-162.  265  FREE SQOARES  You use a suspicious language, you set a trap for us. You yourself first fall into it. - from 1986 Diary  (7ou meditate on the step of the stair for three days. Circle the drane once. You can't find a door in or out. You sit down again.)  MOTIVE I  POSITION PIMH  The pose should be paid attention to. As a traditional beauty pays attention to the look of her face. For example, don't bare her teeth when laughing. For instance, not being allowed to cast sidelong glances. Pierre Cardin chooses you as a model. You redesign yourself according to modern standards. Sit and wait like a clock. At the stroke of midnight go to the passenger boat. You're not on the boat. In the Temple of Precious Light count the countless arhats^. Sit on the south side. Sit facing the wall. All these are ways in which the wise ones would sit. You're not a sage. You don't think the supreme lord is about to come down among us. You can sit more casually. Pick a rush hassock at random. Or imagine an ancient hermit, or imitate a monkey. Since ancient times the wise and virtuous have been so alone. Sitting is the root of realizing the Way. If you can't sit, you have neither skill nor learning. Confucius sat and had three thousand disciples. Zenon sits and discovers that arrows in flight are motionless. ^"Squares" refers to the space which a Chinese character occupies. ^A buddhist monk who has severed all ties with the world.  266  Achilles is never able to catch the tortoise. And you see Yang Zhu'* seated like a flower, swaying when there is no wind. He attracts three or five butterflies. Men like girls whose tails wag. Sleep like a bow. A heavy snow replete with bows and knives. Choosing a style for sleeping is extremely necessary. It's best not to kill during the daytime. I've heard that it was the ugly and inappropriate sleeping form of a palace maiden which led Sakyamuni to spurn the world and become a monk. From that time on he was most particular about the technique of sleeping. You prefer to sleep on your side. You want to change the way you sleep. You try j  turning over. Then feeling in that foot like it's both there and not there. A kind of airplane. A jet. That dives in that gliding-on-water way. An off-screen Tai-chi punch. You feel that kind of position is very elegant. Death is a matter for tomorrow, continue to study it. But today persevere in your morning calisthenics. With regard to  •i  whether there is a life after this one. From Sun Yat-sen to Jesus no one  1  has spoken clearly on the subject. Furthermore a Swiss scientist has research showing that god was an extraterrestrial. You have even less of a desire to head for those heavens. Submission you can accept. There's no tail to be stood up in the air. But the back must be straight. A man's tears aren't easily shed. Maintaining a balance is of extreme importance. Stand like a pine tree.  ,  Under the pine tree ask a child. He will say the master has gone to gather herbs. The child under the pine answers once more. I do not know which pine the master is under. What's important is to stand modestly and  •  courteously. It's best not to speak. Han Yu admired the posture of Jia  '  Dao" as he stood to knock or push at a door. He took him in as a follower. You know there are more positions on the other side. —The posture of Tao Yuan-ming's^ throughout his untroubled gazing at mountains in the south ^(circa 400 B.C.) Philosopher who taught that all individual persons and things are inviolable  denounced as extremist and harmful to  society by Confucianists. "Famous Tang dynasty poets; Han Yu (768-824AD); Jia Dao (779-843AD). ^Famous poet, 365-4277U>.  267  —The posture of Wang Wei's*', loosening his belt while the wind blew through the pines —The posture of Su Dong-po's' as the great river flowed east — L i Qing-zhao's" posture for people slenderer than day-lilies There are many other postures besides people's. The cloud's. The moon's. Birds'. The rainbow's. You call up the zebra and the swan. Add all that to them. Design a new style. Many people will come to imitate you.  (7ou meditate on the stair-step for six days. Circle the dome twice. You can't find a door in or out. Tou sit down again.)  MOTIVE II  EXERCISE IN PERSON  (Tou meditate on the stair-step for nine days, circle the dome three times. You can't find a door in or out. You sit down all over again.)  MOTIVE III  RUBIC'S CUBE  (You meditate on the step of the stair for twelve days. Circle the dome four times. You can't find a door in or out. You sit down once again.) ^Famous Tang dynasty poet, 701-761AD. 'Famous Song dynasty poet, 1037-llOiAD. "Famous Song dynasty poetess, 1084-1151AD.  268  MOTIVE IV  A BED FOR TWO  (You meditate on the stair-step for fifteen days. Circle the dome five times. You can't find a door in or out. You sit down again.)  MOTIVE V  THE SALT OF REFOSAI.  When necessary learn how to shake your head or wave your hand If both your head and your hand are not free You must learn silence  For this li practice fasting  i Reject water for you will never again swim Never again cast nets in rivers, lakes and seas ] 1  Reject fire for you will never again refine stones Never again copy all forms of Icunps Reject rain for you will never again preach Never again beat on broken clay jars Reject wind for you will never again raise a flag Never again coinmand fleets on distant voyages  You make refusing a game without an opponent Your chessmen are still being whittled down in number The salt of refusal is tasteless From, tastelessness you approach the Way to Cook  269  Reject the sages and the virtuous for you will never again study this or that step by hurried step Reject standards for you can't distinguish between good and evil Forget your height and weight Reject relatives and those of no blood relation to you for the crudeness or fineness of unknown roots Reject hatred for you take down bow-and-arrow Hang a gorgeous lion skin in the room Reject the path for you will never trek forth again Never again undertake useless guests Reject ardor for you will never bathe again Never again be visibly moved by beauty and sex  1  You use refusal to ward off attacks by the great and the famous  '  Mao Zedong Thought is ever-victorious  ;  You are unable to hold your own You can only lower your head and admit your crimes  Refuse to open your mouth So as to avoid falling into the trap of attitude You will never debate again Refuse language for you have lost the conception of it can only be silent or howl Refuse illusion for you will never again hope for such highs or lows Reject questions about livelihood for you don't study ways to keep healthy Never again gather herbs and make immortality pills Refuse meditation Continual struggle From beginning to end unable to hack out a bloodied path Refuse to break out of your own entrapment for you're ashamed to face the people on the eastern bank^ Not as good as keeping the next assault in reserve and songs of defiance and death  "Reference to Xiang Yu, tragic genieral annihilated by Liu Bang who later went on to found the Han dynasty (206 B.C. - 220 A.D.).  270  Refusing is an art. The attacking army is at the walls You're still enjoying your siesta Shuffle the chessmen idly At the Pavilion of Uninterrupted Leisure listen to the water and fish  Refuse long journeys You will never again explore the wonders Visit sights or muse over antiquity or intentionally sigh the regretful sigh of aimless drifting ' I  Refuse to scale the heights You will never again arrange jasmine and cornel Never again cry to the blue sky while in your cups nor tug at Chen Zi'ang's^" jacket front not knowing whether to laugh or cry Refuse to go into seclusion  i I  Early in the morning you will sell the dusk of rockery hills Remove the banzai plants Leave nothing as far as the eye can see Nary a bamboo shoot for thirty miles around Refuse to remember For your personality mixes with thick and thin masks of form and illusion The contours are gradually lost You don't remember details You remember the teachings of Zhou Lun-you. People can be against you. You can be hated by them. But you must not be scorned. You especially must not be mocked by people. Mockery makes fasting futile. The salt of refusal makes you look haggard. You gradually enter a state of forgetting all insults and praise According to ancient texts If you persevere it will make you ignorant and desireless —  finally reaching the point of no shame. Then you will be saved.  You agree to try again.  ^Famous Tang dynasty poet, 661-702 A.D..  (You meditate on the stair-step for eighteen days. Circle the dome eight times. You ccin't find a door in or out. You sit down once more.)  MOTIVE VI  WEST OF TAHITI  When you think of that island you can not sit still. The enormous breasts of the women carrying plates of fruit overwhelm you. What frightens also entices. It was because of this grandfather crossed the sea. West of Tahiti. Naked women's skin stirs you so that you can not open your eyes. Fresh juicy fruit. Large pits, rich and resilient. Grandfather must have eaten many of these pits. And from then on thought no more of home. The 1  sea then was not as blue as it is now. The sky very high. A thin layer  '  annealed on the window. Like a piece of transparent glass. Unchanged for decades.  You want to cross the sea. For the sake of tropical pits and the fruit. You're a sex maniac too. When small you enjoyed colored toys. As a grown up you like women and books. Following grandfather. Somebody already gone ahead of you. He was a rascal who called himself an artist. After begging a pound of bread from grandfather. They became friends. He painted island girls. Also seduced island girls. There's more. Later there will be one called Picasso. Who becomes famous because of the rape of an Avignon girl. That year. All the females on the island jumped into the sea. Beneath the fierce sunlight. The men started to love themselves. The men began to make homosexual love. The men started to love sea turtles The men started to love vegetables. In the midst of general love, honor and contempt. He finished the last painting. Set his own straw hut on fire  For the sake that self-immolated artist. You want to cross the sea.  272  For your grandfather's collection of books. You want to cross the sea.  About his death. To this day, opinion is widely divided, some say he died from the poisoned arrow of a rival in love. Some say he died from excessive dissipation. Anyway. He died most shamefully. I remember grandfather saying. After that artist died. One painting stayed on the wall. Even flames weren't able to make off with it. You must go. Standing by the ruins of your fingers. You think of Paris. Think of the fashionable lines of young French women. A match stick brings down the golden plates of fruit and mangos. Only the pits are alive. You close the art book. You want to go nowhere. You say.  —  You didn't come from anywhere.  (Where did we come from?  —  You aren't anything.  (Who are we?  —  You aren't going anywhere.  (Where are we going?  I eat therefore I am. And that's all there is to it.  (You meditate on a step of the stair. Make a circuit of the dome. There's no door in or out. You sit down and don't ever want to get up again)  (December 15-22, 1986, on the shores of Moon Lake)  273  Published in: - Not-not; Not-not-ism Poetry Materials #2, 1987, pp. 1-10 (underground poetry journal, Zhou Lunyou editor); - The Modernist Poets of Sichuan, 1987, Fuling, pp. 75-85 (underground poetry journal, Liao yiwu editor); - Author literary monthly, March 1988, Chang-chun, Ji-lin province, pp. 41-43 (Selections: Parts I, II & V ) . - An Appreciation Dictionary of Exploratory Chinese Poetry, August 1989, shi-jia-zhuang, He-bei People's Publishing House, pp. 603-606 (Selections: Parts I & V ) .  274  20 POKHS ON THE KNIFE'S EDGE  by Zhou Lun-you, December 1989 - March 1992 (Published in this form in Not-Mot #5, underground publication. Fall 1992)  275  THE GREAT BIRD OF THE IMAGINATION (December 17, 1989; in prison in Xi-chang, Sichuan Province, China) The bird is a thing able to fly It's not an oriole or bluebird. It's the great bird Feathers as heavy as Mount Tai^ Clearly pressing in on the imagination I made this up Wings of another kind Water and sky of another kind  •^  The great bird was thought up like this  i  A very gentle action that causes one's heart to pound The great bird is deep-rooted, it makes me think of the lotus Think of an older kind of quicksilver An shearer existence beyond the mass of earthly phenomena Three-hundred years have passed, still the great bird doesn't fly or call out  Sometimes the great bird is a bird, sometimes a fish Sometimes it's like Zhuang-zi's^ butterfly and recluse And sometimes it isn't anything I only know that the great bird consumes flames So it's very beautiful, very bright Actually the alleged flames are also imagined The great bird has no wings, there's not a shadow of a bird about it at all A bird is a metaphor. The great bird is a big metaphor Whether it flies or not it occupies the sky just the same  ^A mountain of great legendary and religious importance in China. ^Ancient philosopher's anecdote about whether a recluse dreams a butterfly or if it dreams him.  276  From a bird to the great bird there's a kind of transition From one language to another there's only a sound The great bird blots out the sky and covers the earth, but can't be grasped The sudden appearance of brilliance empties consciousness with a finger to strike the sky, a very blue tranquility Let a musical key from out of nowhere to be covered by falling dragon flies Deeply and directly enter or withdraw The further one departs from the core the closer one gets to the great bird  To imagine the great bird is to breathe the great bird What causes objects to grow huge and far away; sometimes only a smell Life is brimming with and fortified by crystal Impelling time and bronze to run in opposite directions The great bird is massive like a pearl gestating between the sea and the sky We are contained within Become the bright nucleus Faced with the flesh the eager heart is driven into action  Now the great bird is already beyond my imagination I can't touch it and don't know the direction it travels in But I've definitely been hit, the significance of that kind of mopping-up operation Causes me unforgettable pain, and to ponder whether The great bird is soaring or motionless in another sky That is a sky closely linked with us We only have to think of it occasionally And a certain feeling makes us Vast without limits  277  when the day arrives on which the great bird suddenly comes flying towards us The eyes of us all will be blinded  also in: Modern Han Poetry(Xian-dai Han-shi), underground journal, Beijing, Fall 1991, pp. 135-136.  J78  THE MEANING OF A FROIT-PIT (May 10, 1990; Mount E prison camp, Sichuan)  Language separates out the meat from the fruit The fruit pits that remain become the firm, tensile portion Several grindings of the flowers Renders the fruit pits smaller. But even harder A fruit pit in a fire keeps its original shape  A fruit pit implies nothing Occasionally it's a facial exercise A certain event just being experienced Sometimes it doesn't even entail movement A child is contained in a fruit pit But never grows up. Freckles that flew over the face Are covered in a wink by fall of autumn branches from the tree  (To speak of a fruit pit is to speak of a boy Or a girl. Not related to this world Open mouthed. But with no sound whatsoever)  Fruit pits sometimes burst open some leaves grow out They generate more heads and fruit Or a city One person climbs to the position of king, many scatter Or exactly the opposite  One fruit pit fills the season to bursting with confidence  also in: Modern Han Poetry, underground journal, Beijing, Fall 1991 p. 137.  279  TRANSFORMATION OF SYNTAX COMPI£TED ON THB KNIFE'S EDGE (January 6, 1991; Mount E Prison Camp)  In your imaginings your skin is cut by a sharp blade Blood everywhere. Very thick blood Causing your breath to smell strongly of fish Coldly ponder the wounding process A finger wiped and wiped again on the knife's edge There isn't courage to let you go a little deeper  Now is still not the time to speak of death Death is very simple, living requires more food Air and water, a woman's sexual parts Feelings of carnal desire aggravate you to greater foolishness Living right is yet another matter Mortgage your life, let violence loose its patience  Let the knife sink in a bit deeper. From watching others bleed To bleeding yourself, experience the transformation process first hand The hand that strikes violently is certainly not as relaxed as the hurt hand Open your skin along a sharp thought Watch the knife's edge carve in, from the flesh a spot of blood seeps out And sets off a host of impressions  This is your first drop of blood Abiding by the principles of syntactical transformation No longer has an audience. Use subjective flesh to resist Steel, or be overthrown by it A stretch of sky pressing in upon your head The wound's extensive pain vanishes After you the world remains completely cold  280  The edge of the knife bleeds. Across from the left to the right hand you learned from experience that you attempted slaughter while sacrificing yourself The death of imagination fills your two eyes with ideas of death  - Also in: Modern Han Poetry, underground journal, Beijing, Fall 1991, pp. 138-139.  281  THE EVERLASTING WOUND (Sept. 8, 1990; Mount E Prison camp)  This moment of disaster can't be forgotten Prolonged pain makes me uneasy in my seat I passed through the motionless wrecks of birds in the water Beginning from the tip of the tongue right down to the finger nails I turn green Below the darkest color is another kind of beauty Another species of steely silence sharp  beyond  compare  1  The everlasting wound is a  '  Deep and vast drop of blood. Aimlessly The names of the dead line up quietly around the wound The wound's infection causes more people to burn with dread The effect of a tiger is a riot of color  ^  This is the root of your lack of appetite. Alone we weep  '  Into the wind. Or close our eyes and sit still  (Use iron. Use the most brutal way to reduce inflammation It never heals, a fever on clear days Even more unendurable pain on dark days)  Actually X have no idea where the wound is What kind of knife stuck in which strip of the sky I only feel pain The sleepless hand reaches out from inside my body Makes me live traumatically Blissfully experience agony Carve a work of art that will never fade into my bones  282  The everlasting wound is a degree of depth Our bodies are sunk into it and we can't pull ourselves out Passing through the wound, pain becomes a kind of substance Pressing heavily on the four limbs In a dream cruel cracks appear on a porcelain vase There are no more vessels left intact  As a still-life  Unfolding gracefully under the sunlight A lotus flower stained red with the blood of an infant  In the wound, our whole body festers Or gives off flashes of light, the results are all the same  The wound is forever a fresh color The unavoidable steel causes me an irreducible grief The world lines up around the wound written into the characters of different languages Exalting us or throwing us down, this is of no importance In the wound, in a drop of blood we cherish a crippled mentality Keep it up in daily crystal^ exercises  In the wound, in a drop of blood We keep up our daily crystal exercises  Also in: Modern Han Poetry, underground journal, Beijing, Spring 1991, pp. 65-66.  ^"Crystal" is symbolic of the'process of poetry writing in the poetry of Odysseus Elitis.  283  THE SUBJECT'S IX)SS (Jan. 15, 1991; Mount E Prison Camp)  Use a mirror as a metaphor The subject is a thing untouchable in a mirror An unresolved thought Embodying a lot of content, but difficult to grasp From start to finish contained and not revealed in the mirror It lets intimate desires keep their freshness  A mirror is a kind of authentic fabrication The imaginary oriole is more profound in a metaphor Expecting a sort of miracle opened by the shouts of wild fantasy To manifest itself, and then you walk into a landscape Surrounded by music you listen to another strain Unable to clearly describe the lotus flower behind your lips  We can only be outside the mirror: illuminated by light Or forever deceived, this isn't the mirror's fault  Facing the mirror is a form of confrontation Is to lay aside life and confront death On an abstruse plane the soul looks after itself One side quiet the other guarded by shields Or escapes. Let thought slowly crystallize Watch the flesh rot, with an incomparably steadfast expression  The depth of a mirror is beyond conjecture Enter a mirror and immediately become part of darkness The entire life of a poet is spent struggling in a mirror Mulling over the subtly changing colors of the sky Seeking the profundity of diamonds Dreaming of qualities in immortal bronze  284  (The mirror suddenly catches fire, unexpected flames Have singed the hair of a generation The world shatters, having looked into the mirror)  The initial image also disintegrates One drop of blood castes the mirror itself into doubt Turn the mirror around There are no more objects on the reverse side Separated from metaphors the mirror's merely a piece of glass But also not less than glass  The glass falls to the ground and is shattered by sunlight You sustain a serious life-long loss  Also in: Modern Han Poetry, underground journal, Beijing, Fall 1991, pp. 133-134.  285  THE IMAGE OF THE TOIJ31ANT (January 26, 1991; Mount E Prison Camp)  Eat Eastern philosophy and attain the Tao of Lao-zi and the Yellow Emperor The chrysanthemum of antiquity enters deep into your bone marrow Subdue the hard with the soft  endure all humiliations  But don't believe they humiliate ]  But don't feel their weight  accept his every blow  let him laugh  Exist outside your body as a butterfly You feel the holiness of this wrong  decisions are in the hands of others  You can only give in  the words are in other people's mouths  1  Speechlessly you listen attentively  1  They touch on the soul again  ,  peacefully  allow the attacks to expand  a face hangs  your thoughts turn to the unfathomable  The image of the tolerant is a tortoise It draws its head back into its belly  allows people to trample it  J  underfoot You find pleasure in this One hundred times yield  ponder the suffering of mankind a hundred times admit your guilt  One hundred times crawl under the crotch of others Swallow your last tooth into your stomach Water is hurt by the stone  water surrounds the stone  The beauty of forbearance issues forth brilliance from the inner depths At crucial moments think of Han Xin^ And your conscience is set at ease  the word tolerate is a knife in the heart  The heart drips blood  and still you talk and joke gleefully  Oh, the mighty Tolerant! '^A famous general who helped Liu Bang, the founding emperor of the Han Dynasty, conquer China. As a child he was often insulted and tormented by others:ie., he was forced to crawl through the legs of others. Died 196 BC.  286  THE CIRCUMSTANCES REGARDING AN ARRANGEMENT OF STONES(October 3, 1990;  Mount E Prison Camp)  This is a situation I have never before entered deeply into It takes violent hold of you. Atop a colossal stone Rocks containing iron pile up coldly And form into columns and walls You have been put between stones The north, or the south. You sit facing a wall Dully dreading the blue which seeps out of the silence  This isn't some kind of game of the imagination At the cost of your life you are on the scene For all of three years, you must accept these stones Become one component in this arrangement Only through murder can you experience that intensity Forcing itself in on all sides Compelling you to become small, smaller Until you skip into a stone and become a form of a thing  Break open a stone and there's still a stone From wall to wall. From the soul out to the eyes  You have to love these stones, stone people And stoney things, love and be intimate with them Nod a greeting, sometimes the bumps will leave your head bleeding Heavier stones on top, occupy commanding positions You can't look up at them  but can sense them at all times  Always so indubitable and brutal They can smash your body to pieces at any time  287 The circumstances of the arrangement of stones are like this Like the dangers to a person entering deeply into a tiger Pulling teeth in the tigers' mouth then suddenly a tooth aches Maybe one day you'll obtain a whole tiger skin Thereby proving your courage and riches But right now the tiger is biting you, eating you This non-substituteable plight has damaged you all over  To penetrate a tiger and not be eaten by it To penetrate a stone and not become a stone To pass through burning brambles and still be your old self Requires perseverance. You must hold fast to yourself Just as the crystal holds fast to the transparency of the sky The iron stones continue to pile up around you In the arrangement of stones you light a candle Illuminating each of your wounds more brightly  Also in: Modern Han Poetry, underground journal, Beijing, spring 1991, pp. 66-67.  288  THE HIGH-STEPPING CRANE AND MIDGET BOKSE OF THE PAINTER (November 12, 1990; Mount E Prison Camp)  This is my experimental work. An extraordinary composition The appearance of an animate or inanimate object on the same piece of metal A crane is harder to hold than a horse The undersized and striped type Within the confines of a fixed circle let it Take pocket-sized walks. Now draw a patch of lawn White palings indicate the line of demarcation Within the confines it fully Enjoys the sunshine. This is the appearance of things In the seeable depths, in the very bright shadows I saw a crane (in a spot a little higher Than the horse's) circling the glass in a high-stepping dance Surrounding it is the untitled sky (A red cock's comb is redder than the first drop of blood from a virgin) From a viewable object to unseeable radiance The very variable wings are quickly arranged change at its most advanced stage tends toward pure indifference The horse is eating grass just now I make it lift its head and take a midget's look up at The crane in the unseeable depths. The horse can not see it But it has heard the crane's cry distinctly. The far distant crane Was once deep inside the horse This is what I want it to know and strive to remember (Only the horse once had a high-stepping time Its hooves stamped back and forth across the sky) Now the horse seems to have sensed something, it pricks up its ears And neighs shrilly the once (And so the horse looks a little larger) But the crane is still in the unseeable depths (I intend To not let it land) let the crane, hang in midair  :89  In accord with my intent waiting until the tiny horse walks out from behind its white palings The crane in the depths will fly brightly by itself out from inside the copper  Also in: Modern Han Poetry, underground journal, Beijing, Spring 1991, pp. 68-69.  290  CHAIRMAN MAO SAYS patterned after "The Country's in Chaos", a verbal drinking game popular in China (September 20, 199(1; Mount E Prison Camp)  Chairman Mao says  alcohol's a medicinal potion  Down it and there'11 be no loose talk  Chairman Mao says again  Revolution is based on self-awareness  strip off your own pants and clothes  Chairman Mao also says  reform through labour is the same as a day's work  Being killed is the same as sleep  Mao continues to say  Masturbation does no harm to society Is a popular sport beneficial to the health of body and mind Suited for all round development Elderly honorable Chairman Mao is tired of speaking He says finally:  People of the entire nation  Shut up!  29i  FROM THE CONCRETE TO THE ABSTRACT BIRD (December 1, 1989;  in Xi-chang City Prison)  Seldom do birds fly by windows here But the feeling of feathers comes across my face often This is the concrete bird Below the high wall, within range of fire At all times prepared to drop at the sound of a shot  Actually our so-called bird Is only a kind of posture  1 i  From the written word becoming a flying bird From a bird changing to the written word Moving to-and-fro between a book and the sky Occasionally feathers flutter down The bird becomes a concrete thing  Birds in a book and birds in the sky Cry out together, fly in the azure sky The birds grow larger  increase in number  Gradually I am unable to hold them Bird-catching eyes and nets suddenly open Hairy hands stained with bird sound  From bow and arrow to canister shot is a sort of progress From wing to-wing is a graceful perseverance Dead birds hide inside books and become written words Even more birds fly in the sky Glass that passes beyond time and space Birds still flying  292  The bird is a word, but also not a word Between books and the sky the bird is a sort of hinge An imaginary shape. After breaking away from substance We are birds ourselves The final image emerging in a dream When birds are injured, fresh blood flows from our eyes when birds are silent, stones spread through our hearts  In prison I write this poem With iron upon my body. My face feels The softness of feathers. I know Only a concrete bird can be caught and killed But a pure bird can't be Because that is merely a kind of abstract flight Not a bird flying, the sky The abstract bird is beyond all range of fire The abstract bird can not be shot dead  After the crack of the gun The bird still flies  293  WATCHING A CANDID IGNITE (April 12, 1990; in Xi-chang Prison)  Nothing is crueler than this To watch a candle ignite, and then die out This small course of events shakes a person up Several fingers part in the candlelight, lift them up Make an elegant design, deeper grained than a woodcut I didn't see how the candle was lit Only remember one sentence, one gesture The candle flame leaps from this eye to that More hands are lifted up in the candlelight At the light's core is the blood and fat of youth Beams of light in all directions The entire sky is filled with the face of a dove Nothing is crueler than this Watching helplessly the candle about to die, powerless Shadows concentrated in the candlelight gather around I can't see clearly their faces and teeth A thin sound of thunder treading over yellow skin I never saw how the candle flame died Only felt the graceful breaking of those arms The exquisite fracturing of more arms Wax tears cover the stair Death creates the coldest landscapes out of summer After a brilliant twinkle the candle has become ash Objects shot through by candlelight staunchly darken  To watch a candle ignite, and afterwards die out Undergoing the greatest cruelty in the world of men In darkness, I can only, silently, send up this smoke  7\.  ,  .O 7  CU^H^/^f'S AUi>;2.^, :l^--^-- i3'.^. f/^  294  IN A HOOD TO DETEST IRON (October 19, 1990; Mount E prison camp)  Always afraid to return to that night That moment of flames. In their midst Let the rush of hot blood ignite your whole body once more The power of words stirs the lives of the humble In flames, the square became suddenly very small By immense passion raised up And then from a very high place dropped down The radiant shards turn the eye-witnesses into the blind  ^  There can only be silence  (  There can only be distant, quiet self-reproach and the flood of tears The weight of tractor treads crossing over the top of your head Is beyond experiencing. Who can say  i  whether the sound of smashing bones pleases the ear Crueler iron and steel Also rolled across your mother's breasts The abundance of mother's milk dyes the sky an agonizing white  (I'm unwilling to go through that feeling again Out of death, let each person together with me Gather up their own face. Agony's rebirth)  Henceforth, that night saturated with iron and steel Becomes my dementia In the mood to despise iron I can not speak of fire Only think of gathering a few stems from tangerines and the like In a time of no heroes and butterflies I boil water and talk of coward^. I remember Then in a certain school in the suburbs Bells tolling all day, striking the monks all day  295  We live like this. Just like this Persistently don't think Persistently act as if nothing has happened But irresistibly, in the depths the wound is becoming inflamed Abruptly breaking off the sound of our laughter Like this our grief turns us into despicable creatures  Like the water, be like this, without fish That sky without birds A structure without meaning. Striking and not striking All are bells. Sounding and not sounding, all are monks Vision sheared off by the glass  the airplane is vomited gently upward  Just like an unsuccessful abortion After you've been scooped out Your whole body is dug down to dullness  Before that night I lived as lightly as a goose feather After that night 1 awoke with a heart of dying embers  296  A SWORD'S INSCRIPTION (January 7,1990; in xi-chang Prison)  The sword. A sharp implement The ancients had no choice but to cast it Sages had no choice but to use it Occasional use is fine But it can't be used often Because the sword is not omnipotent When a head decidedly drops to the ground The hand holding the sword Has already struck Into a thing more relentless than iron  297  THINKING OF OURSKLVES IN THE FIRE OF A NEIGHBORING HOUSE (September 15, 1991; at home in Xi-chang)  A fire breaks out in the neighboring house, very peaceful flames Stab painfully at my eyes. Old people and water alarmed in their sleep Distance doesn't exist, on both sides of the wall Bread is sliced equally, becoming an authentic fabrication The reason for fire is beyond bread, beyond i  housing and inflation. A pure aesthetic issue Unfolding universally, acquires a higher form A distant fire in the senses burns close by THAT IS OUR FIRE AND THEIR FORTRESS Burning mightily under the close attention of a multitude of eyes  1  No audience is indifferent. Each person  '  Is in the fire, each person in a different state of mind No longer is this the kind of fire lit in the name of revolution By a pyromaniac, scorching one from top to bottom This is the fire of mankind. From arm to arm  4  From mouth to mouth, infection by skin contact  '  The forbidden vocabulary of the bloodsuckers appears repeatedly The largest end-of-century landscape with the power of a thunderbolt THAT IS OUR FIRE BURNING THEIR FORTRESS A structure of seventy years. With tangible and intangible Stones, bayonets, lies and dogma A painstakingly constructed fortress, crumbling in the fire This is the last opportunity. Watch the blood of others flow And yourself moved emotionally, then tears flow, after which feelings flow Afterwards in sorrowful symphonies silently mourn for three minutes This is still not enough. Toleration of atrocities is a people's disgrace We have been shameless for too long, the hair of several generations Is falling out while waiting, not only lacking iron But needing a bath of flame. Edifices here and there  298  Are all the same structure, we can only wreck them from bottom to top Such a large fire! Tongues and hands burn together Run in a breath, whether near or far from water its of no use The fire has reached the roof, the fire burns their eyebrows In the distance the tallest bell tower topples down with a roar THAT IS OOR FIRE WHICH DESTROYED THEIR FORTRESS The immortal founding enterprise in an instant no more Their catastrophe is our holiday. Express ourselves With alcohol and expressions of the eyes. Dipped in the blood of the dead paint a bird Wings which blot out the sky fly toward the blaze Our high tides or lows, our once extinguished enthusiasm Hasn't yet cooled to ash. The fire's burning in the distance The fire is idealized on our bodies. Old people and water Firmly entrenched in the fortress. The toys of the leader are racing A ringlike fortress coldly surrounds us To know iron and steel is brutal, and To handle one's own life cautiously, this is not cowardly Follow Zhuang-zi and be carefree, be the so-called spark Burning internally, this is precisely our true situation Stay low, until the critical moment, and then tell all  299  SIHUU^TING THE UUIGDAGE OF THE MUTE (November 11, 1991; by Moon Lake in Xichang)  Speak like this: mouth hung open But unable to utter a sound. Even with the mouth not open Make your mouth withdraw into your body, eternally sealed Language becomes the reason for health Thinking is obstinate in broad daylight The elegant comportment of silence. To speak or not to speak Is only a question of attitude  Standing poses its own gesture: stand in the corner facing both walls Eliminate the sitting lotus. Its very cold in the mountains Extend your two hands and you'll always touch something Again a wall. Again it's electrified barbed wire Each day the stone in the water is growing up Dreams are moving toward the depths of the day. You are outside the glass See the changes in your own facial expression are devoid of content  Speak like this: mouth hung open But unable to utter a sound, better not to open it An overflowing mouth answers for an eventful siunmer A cold and sad beauty keeps the heat in your body Face the wall and think. As a serial-numbered animal Acting according to regulations lead your life, eat and drink Gradually gef used to the condition of a deaf-mute  The essential of exercising mute language is not speaking But getting ready to speak, it must be you who speaks out The iron-black nature of this century The sensation of metal is retained and flows in your blood It reminds you frequently and painfully The essential of mute language exercises is in speaking so as to avoid losing the ability to express through disuse  300  Speak like this, without any object Speak purposelessly. Copy a mute's Expressions and actions: exaggerations and details Combining characteristics, affect being the subject of the verb. Affect A predicate state. Make sentences according to mood Speak without the need of lamplight simpler even than moving a chair  Its saves energy too. Take away the hand on the glass Open your eyes, already you're a great master of pantomime Speechless existence is a state The trick to it lies between speaking and not speaking A little audience involvement, embodies a thousand possibilities A sort of explanation: If one day your tongue is cut out you may use the language of the mute as your second means of articulation  301  NIGHT or THE CAT KING (December 22, 1991; on the shores of Moon Lake in Xichang)  Night of sliding glass I saw a cat  at the corner of metaphysics  Lift a vigilant tail straight up  ready to act at anytime  At this moment all clocks suddenly stop This is a black cat Representing total darkness  deeper than the most secret impulses  I can't distinguish objective from subjective  mutually the cat and  the night make up the backdrop Sometimes its one face  sometimes its two completely different faces  Each animal species lies hidden within definitions Only the one-eyed cat king keeps watch  the revolving green eye  Sends out a soul-stirring radiance from the pedestal of darkness Unavoidably we are toppled over Sometimes feeling fine  sometimes totally losing confidence  With a motion not easily detected by us It imitates the sound of passing water  the sound of light  the sound  of a plant falling to the earth and sprouting roots The sound of unseeable objects in midair resisting each other the heart of metaphysics Is a blank space  the cat king occupies the best position  From a height risk-free  controls everything with its gem  Its sharp claws catch our skulls and our names Takes our appetite away  its mighty leap  hard to settle down  When frightened we sense its magnificence even more  insignificant ourselves  When fear scatt.ers the crowd  off in all directions  The business of the cat king has climbed to its zenith Our senses have all been sucked out Our bodies sprout pine needles  bird feathers and wild animal fur  I know the relationship between this cat and me  302  A contract signed by others repaid by me  an arbitrary debt  The fish bone stuck in my throat has two sharp ends  I spit blood and live  From the blue of the tiger interpret the origin of things Until a piano opens up the skylight and is speaking bright words Then I roll in from the metaphysical depths to my own body That cat alone remains in back of the glass night Each night I am kept incontinent by his deep-set gem  303  THE HtJNGRT TEARS (March 12, 1992; on the shores of Moon Lake)  Very few people know how you live Those days of anti-materialism have passed lightly by A peculiar sensation in the stomach Runs throughout the writing of this poem  tighten the trouser belt  Appease your hunger with the bread of women and imagination ••  Fart like there's nobody around (there is food in poetry) You possess the world's best cereals and wheat A gourmet meal of the imagination  still unfinished  But pushed aside for other reasons  the search for reasons to console myself  J  A wry smile  there are no endless feasts under heaven  i  When writing the climax I always get cold sweats When out of bullets and food l silently recite the works of Mencius^ As if that gentleman were an empty-bellied me Spitting acidic juices on one hand  and on the other waiting for an  j important appointment to fall from heaven j  Actually there isn't any extraordinary reason Only the writing of a few poems Called Not-Not  editing a magazine  published irregularly  Like this, art getting the better of the stomach ^  A fashion  makes hunger  laid out in a column  It makes more people imitate and go through it The holiness and honour of going hungry for art Anyway I'm still young  while it is tempered with words  The stomach is damaged  no pain  Just because of the delusion created by a slight case of dropsy Everybody sayS you look strong and stout  have a fairly rich life  Until American handcuffs imported together with freedom of thought Are clapped on your hands  then someone discovers  Among the many rich and poor mouths crying out in hunger  ^A Confucian sage-scholar, 372-289 BC.  304  You are starved into become the most patriotic You gnaw on roots of plants  on the mountain  drink the north-east wind  Come out with an altered physique  more room in your stomach  You leaf through unfinished poems and your entire body goes cold Since coming into the world  you've used the energy of a lifetime to write one poem  And still you have not finished  can't give up on it half way  Take poverty as a pure prerequisite To be experienced (let others play about with Qi-gong^ and consumer goods) You tighten your belt  persevere to the end with art  The wife serves extremely clean and tidy meals everyday There are always problems that lie low in the sunlight Causing you to dwindle away like an immortal Taoist  you abhor eating meat and fat  The wife says  I think you'd best become a Buddhist monk  You say your ties to the world are not broken yet  wait till this poem's done  When your mind's at ease  you'll become a buddha on the spot  ^The harnessing of the life force which flows through the body much like bloody for medical use or for show: eg. walking on eggs, smashing large stones with limbs or head.  305  THE WAY OF THE HAND (March 7, 1992; on the shores of Moon Lake)  No hand of mine Forever unwilling to cut itself off from my body Breath heavier than a shadow Opressing each body part From mouth to lungs  then to the four limbs  Allowing you no reckless movement Your spirit ought to be still more sensitive It wants to go  get far, far away  To a place where their whips are not long enough to reach Beyond the scope of games laid on by the hand Limited to thought only  excursions of imagination  Just doing this alone is also very dangerous More real than a knife edge are the feelers in the hand Sharper  they stick into the heart of dreams  Know everything Detail go  don't ever let a  and speed  like hawks and falcons  From the sky keep watch over the movements of a rabbit It lurks in every place you might possibly go It lurks in plainclothes, collar turned up long ago It took only the fall of that fatal blow And everything was lost with you They give you an out  kicking up a stink for half a year  or they carry it out over an extended sentence  Carry out a manhunt as long as your life against you Since you're not to be killed immediately  the hand is certainly showing no lenience  Out of each day's terror you learn by experience The patience and cruelty of a cat toying with a mouse The magnificent efficiency of machines  a hand still colder than iron  A wall away it cooks raw rice to a tenderness Your name in black on a list  it smears  306  And draws a thick red line^ through it  these are no idle hopes of persecution  The barbed wire running in and out of life and the mobile walls Force you to back into a book for self defense To hold out for the last few isolated words and phrases The light from the hand points at all things inclusively If you come out of the water there is a mesh of the fish's internal net If you escape out of the sky there's a deadly target range for flying birds Open the classics and find oppressive chapters Violence and persecution aimed at thought During each day's meals  the illusory shadow of the hand  Even begins to interfere with your stomach and intestines Suppresses your appetite The urge for sex rapidly sinks into paralysis Premature hair loss and forced sleep nightly Leave behind the mark of the hand  a element in the callousness of metal  Like the beauty of an omnipresent tiger The structured control of the crystal Control of characters  the theme's  the poet's concrete form  Can't shake off the abstraction of control theory The hand tosses and turns  makes you laugh bitterly wildly  Taste all the sweet sour bitter spice of the human world At the last not knowing whether to laugh or cry  you finally understand  It turns out that a national chess champion is matched up against you The imperiousness of the hand Unavoidable defeat Outcome  the rhetorical shape of violence  as inevitable  better to live by the way of the hand  As a show of submission  slice into the depths of time  Use silence as an indirect reply  ^Used on public notices to indicate that the death sentence has already been carried out on a person.  307  Under the hand's pressure and influence This poem can have two endings First you think of living in seclusion  study the examples of ancient poets  Behind a chrysanthemum (no mountains for the hermit All mountains have been nationalized) You have to stay in your original place  not thinking  change from a mute into an idiot Sit forgetting under An unmindful tree  without beginning without end (Ending #1)  Or peal off your tense skin Toward the light  throw yourself  from behind armour plate  Catch hold of the hand with no body temperature Let your blood flow  smear it all over the palms  In the final testimony of this century force it To leave behind a bloody print (Ending #2) There are always painful privacies  in the game of compulsion  You must act as if nothing has happened On an irregular chessboard Continue your match against the shapeless hand  FIRE-BATH SENSATIONS (March 23, 1992; on the shores of Moon Lake)  No more a bird. Get rid of that element in the metaphor In man's name step directly into the center of the flames A naked body. At the non-mythical level of meaning Taste the flames. Savor a pure-gold enthusiasm Enveloped by a greater enthusiasm, or the fire-extinguishing Baptisms and devotions. The subject and the non-subject Are separated only by a wall, the distance of a footstep. He And I, two absolutely different kinds of flame On the tongue of a flame experience your own flesh Much more realistic than watching others set fire to their fingers The smell of burnt skin, the smell of well-done meat The greatest significance of excessive agony, is not to know pain Inside a very small flame, the faces distorted by a great distress Mutual barbarity, mutual blood-letting, mutual betrayal Reciprocal snowstorms. In the heart of the flames It's so cold you give off smoke. The fire's penetrations change endlessly A resolute siege and slaughter. Thought Is unadulterated darkness. The white of a pure blue flame The red of a flag. The transparency of bloodless killing You read the biographies of great personages a hundred times and still can't attain the sublime Can't find any sense of the phoenix Or even its feathers. What's harder than iron is fire The perfect opportunity for self-refinement. The crucial moment Blood pressure rises high. Consciousness at arm's length The teeth of fire nibble your hair white Like the ashes of finest charcoal one by one. Radiance Consumed by silver. In the flames life tends toward purity A resolution that overpowers all other thought. Neither restless nor hot Inside the fire you shake off the fire, return to the core life-force The initial position. Tempered into steel, or  309  Tempered into essence. Water evaporating in high temperatures None of these portray your condition at this moment Better to return to your original idea, shake off the ashes From the flames not a phoenix But a crow is reborn, a gleam of complete black  310  THIRD GENERATION POETS^ (February 28, 1991; in a blizzard at Mount E Prison Camp)  A mob of refined thugs Isolated for too long  under the dictatorship of words in this year finally raises the flag of revolt  They held an antipathetic position  toward the faces of gentle sincere poets  Pee on them  Causing neatly ordered China  To sink into prolonged chaos  these are the third generation poets  A generation that blows its own trumpet A from-bottom-to-top insurrection Smashes the old world to pieces  declares itself a revolution  within the limits of language fabricates lots of rare nouns and verbs  Blackens or gilds its own face  and no one applauds ever  The third generation's perception of itself is grand  they think their  golden light is great All around the country for a long time  they write first rate poems read second rate books  Indulge in third rate women  as bandits make a permanent name for themselves  They possess the insight to recognize heroes  a word from Brother yao-bang^  And third generation poets come up from the underground  looking deathly pale  Sit in the central hall of the propaganda bureau  and sing a folk song for the Party to hear  They spit out a gutfull of acid and bitterness  the gentleman died for the sake of his intimates  Those who shouldn't die get out