One whole September
I was never without him
So much so I frequently turned my head to look around
for fear there was a shadow following me
Waves lapping on the island
schools of fish in the water
we gradually grew bored with looking
sunrises and sunsets were nothing unnatural
the restaurant’s owner treats us
like his long lost friends
each time pretending so
must be difficult for him

I say: Noodles
He says: Rice
there’s also a shared bowl of soup
during this honeymoon we should treat each other as honored guests
so I ladle him some soup
he also ladles me some

In the forest is a peculiar bird
That at midnight starts to trill
I think: That’s another day over with
What is he thinking
I don’t know

Endless honeymoon
that bird still sings in the forest
it thinks nobody knows
but I’m in the forest listening closely
I don’t dare turn my head to look around
for fear that behind me
he has replaced my shadow

By Wu Ang
translated, from the Chinese, by Leah House

Leah House is majoring in Asian Studies with a concentration on Chinese language at the University of Michigan. She also studies Spanish Literature.

Wu Ang is a female contemporary Chinese poet born in China’s Fujian Province in 1974. She later attended Shanghai’s prestigious Fudan University, and proceeded to attain a postgraduate degree in contemporary Chinese fiction at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Her writing is recognized by its simplicity in vocabulary which she says is because she feels complicated words take away from a poem’s main ideas.