Ode to Friday: Liu Jian

icecreamman

Office work: a wearisome jumble;
ink drafts: a crosshatch of deletions and smears.
Racing the writing brush, no time to eat,
sun slanting down but never a break;
swamped and muddled in records and reports,
head spinning till it’s senseless and numb –
I leave off and go west of the wall,
climb the height and let my eyes roam:
square embankments hold back the clear water,
wild ducks and geese at rest in the middle –
Where can I get a pair of whirring wings
so I can join you to bob on the waves?

~ Poem without a category, written 216AD by Liu Jian, a member of the poetry group known as the Seven Masters of the Jian-an Reign who lived during the Eastern Han period (China, 196-220AD)

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Image: An icecream vendor waits for customers on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan, Zohra Bensemra/Reuters, courtesy The Guardian

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