蕁麻菜湯 Brennesselsuppe

Translated by Helen Leung  


These scorching leaves
once scalded the hands that picked them
Itís our poverty during wartime
cooked into todayís ease
itís the homeless wandering of our family
cooked into memories of homely comfort
Itís the pine needles from our mountains
cooked into todayís sweetness

Itís pain bone deep
cooked into todayís forgetting
Itís massive swollen ideals
cooked into mustard for garnish
Itís the grief of love lost
cooked into wan smiles
Itís violent self-abandonment
cooked into fragile hopes


Itís my bamboo village
itís your modest clothing
itís our parentsí fears
itís our childrenís future
so fragmented these fragments
yet complete in its incompletion
to soothe years of our sadness
to quench centuries of our thirst

there are wars still raging
thereís someoneís sisters being killed
there are lives in poverty
thereís someoneís true love being lost
such unbearable marks left
on the bricks of these ruins
can we grind them fine
to cook a rich green soup?





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Copyright © AIEL 2008. All words and images are the property of Leung Ping Kwan and his associates. All Rights Reserved.