Meeting Stonecutters at a Station
By Zou Jingzhi
Translated by Hannah Lund
They are calm, worn
witnessing others on the platform bid farewell --
Blessed, for they need not reach out
to touch expendable things.
In the quarry they know
that to split a boulder, other than
time, they must join the world
and strain with slow strength.
I’m not one of them,
this designation mysterious as fortune-telling.
It’s like a man chosen to be a god:
Some spend lifetimes before their images lighting candles.
Jingzhi Zou is a Beijing writer, born in 1952, who has been writing poetry since the 1980s. In the 1990s, he wrote for television and movies, influencing a broad audience. His future writing projects will mainly focus on theatrical pieces, with five plays, four operas and others in the works.
Hannah Lund is an American writer and Chinese-English translator. She is a master's candidate in Comparative Literature and World Literature at Zhejiang University, and is a founder of the Hangzhou Writer's Association. She is working on translations and adaptations of Chinese ghost stories, as well as her own poetry.