Yellow River & Other Poems

Four Poems by William Marr

Yellow River

into this old river
the sufferings of one
the sufferings of two
the sufferings of hundreds
the sufferings of millions

Let it swell
and flood
over the vast territory
of the sleepless pillow
and change its course
a thousand times
between midnight
and dawn


Visiting Tu Fu’s Hut On An Early Autumn Day

the breeze is gentle and the sun is bright
the hut that was once blown down
has already been rebuilt
into a shrine
spatial and clean
it is unlikely the roof will ever leak again

they erected in front of the hut
his emaciated statue
just to remind us
there’s always a strong gail
in the realm of poetry
lying in wait


Taking Pictures Of My Wife And A Ninety-Pound Baby Male Panda

as if bored with the incessant flashes
he becomes restless on her lap
his sleek fur slips again and again
from her unsettled embrace

frantically I adjust my lenses
hoping to capture another image
before he sinks to the ground
or becomes extinct

Note: At The Giant Panda Conservation And Research Center In Wolong, China, On September 17, 2002


Night Flute

Let the ever-rising pitch
of the wind
from the bamboo grove
a pair of sleepless eyes
towards the dark end
of the alley

Note: Years ago in Taiwan, blind masseuses used to roam the city alleys, playing flutes made of bamboo in search of customers.

Editor’s Note on Yellow River & Other Poems:

Yellow River & Other Poems is not the first set of poems that Eastlit have published by William Marr.

  • Five Poems by William Marr were published in Eastlit August 2013. The poems were: Homecoming, At Lo Wu Stn, Bian Zhong, On the Towpath, The Great Wall.
  • William Marr Poetry a collection of five more poems was published in Eastlit February 2014. The poems were: An After Dinner Immortal, Thinking of You on the Train, Snowflight, The Little Bird and City Windows.
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