James Baldwin is Dead

by Zang Di

It snowed very little— a sign of loneliness
that lasted many years, quietly,
like a mysterious contempt

When a heavy snow bursts
death will have to be offered
as a body that contradicts it

and constitutes a great obstacle.
What death desires most
is the body that it had to endure

James Baldwin’s body
is qualified, in the background of snow
He looks more impressive than death

A luxurious victim
he turned pitch-black in the snow
and so did the snow in his spirit

Translated from the Chinese by Ming Di and Neil Aitken

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