The Conversation

Chenjiapu Translator Residency

A kind of homogenized dreamworld
I’m in the presence of a man who tempts me to open up
and speak, as if
one would actually wish​ to live gripped by silence
the gurgling flow
choked to a halt, throat clogged
stagnant air caught within the correctness

Voice bound to be consumed
One’s person bound to be homogenized
The conversation just won’t let go
"Really, just a casual chat"
The face of his organizational power’s thin layers compressed
like toothed ferns
permitting one to go on as one is dying to stop

In the ups and downs of the afternoon drowsiness gnaws wormlike
in a sodden expanse, everything
as should be, entangled in everything else

Give it a good think
Just take a seat and turn transparent
The hungry serpent begins to writhe
Reach across the table and grab hold

Is it me?
Wavering, I work a rotting spot in a tooth
with my tongue, feeling out parallel lies,
exploring the tunnel mouth

Did you or didn’t you?
Did I or didn’t I?
Well, then, just pick a number between 1-10?
Am I done?

He points to a word
It’s such a pity that it’s so problematic
Don't tell me you haven’t
figured it out yet?

Evening’s dark deepens
I still haven't come around,
crazy hat-wearing
They forget too quickly


Conversation does not necessarily mean we speak
Just like beginner’s mind
when things happen
nothing also happens
I don’t know how to get you to listen, let alone understand


Anyway, since you‘ve already played
your own self
why not continue to play it?


About that chance encounter between you and that extinct bird
What year was that?
Of course something like that must have taken place long ago
The extinct bird is not contained by time
I feel that I’m going insane, Sir
I'm going to rip all my hair out
The faint stink of bird droppings remains


The voice is so real
The hands and feet seem so realistic
The walls seem so realistic
This conversation cuts through truth, reality and spreads throughout the brain
The stream flows gently through dreamland and saturates it
Are you or are you not?
I am and I am not.
Have you or haven’t you?
I have and haven’t.


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