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Zhou Yaping’s handwriting of the poem “Secret Garden” 秘密花园

Recently, Zhou Yaping presents many of his poems under his own handwriting. What is shown here is his handwriting of the poem “Secret Garden.” Although Zhou Yaping writes colloquial verses and distances himself from any traditional or even conventionally modern styles of poetry, he writes many Chinese characters in the traditional forms 繁体. I’m not sure if this is because he was exposed to too many Taiwanese publications or because he was deeply embedded in the traditional culture making documentaries related to pre-modern Chinese history. When someone asked why he wrote traditional characters, he said frustratedly he couldn’t tell which characters were simplified and which ones were traditional. The handwritten poem brings the author closer to us and I think it looks nice. The following “Secret Garden” 秘密花园 is one of my favorite poems by Zhou Yaping. The translation is a cooperation of Me and Paul Manfredi. 

Secret Garden

I live with a herd of animals,

the only one dressed neat and tidy.

They walk back and forth

No one to be disgusted with my beauty.

The dark cloud in the distance dissipates   and gathers again

Thunder is pressed down

searching constantly in the gaps of buildings

for emancipation

The animals   are walking

The animals     are walking

The animals     are still walking.

Finally a great big animal

lying by my side, lets me touch with hand

its icy-cold face

秘密花园

我和一群动物居住在一起

就我一个穿得干干净净。

它们走来走去

没人嫌弃我的美丽。

远处的乌云走了,又来了

雷声被压抑着

总想在楼宇的缝隙中

寻求解放。

动物,走着

动物,走着

动物,还走着。

最后一只大的动物

侧卧在我的身旁,让我用手

抚摸它冰凉的脸

秘密花园