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The Statue of Feeling

 A tree stump planted
 in dreams has never seen
 a sparrow's perch

 It chirps like a solitary finger

 Snow wraps its wooly shawl
 around the courtyard
 warmed and dripping
 with mystery
 The roof ridge turns red
 in the fiery stove of the fading sun
 Tree shadows turn putrid, memory's
 dove-feathers flutter then settle into time
 a wine jug hollow and deep
 Fallen leaves rustle
 on vague palm-lines
 A lamp goes out



Huang Xiang was born in Hunan Province, China, in 1941. He began writing poetry in the 1950s and has been imprisoned repeatedly for his work. In 1978 he founded "Enlightenment," the first underground writers' society, and started a literary magazine under the same name. In exile in the United States since 1997, he has been a resident poet in Pittsburgh under the PEN Cities of Asylum program for writers and currently lives in New Jersey with his wife and son. Huang's Out of Communist China, a bilingual anthology, was published in 2003, and a new selection of his poems, A Lifetime Is a Promise to Keep, will be published in spring 2008. As a juror for the 2008 Neustadt International Prize for Literature, he nominated Tibetan writer Tsering Woeser for the award.
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Title Annotation:poetry
Author:Xiang, Huang
Publication:World Literature Today
Article Type:Poem
Date:Mar 1, 2008
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