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martes, 6 de agosto de 2013

LI-YOUNG LEE [10.411]

Li-Young Lee

Li-Young Lee 
(李立扬, pinyin : Lǐ LIYANG) (nacido el 19 de agosto 1957) Es un poeta americano. Nació en Yakarta, Indonesia, de  padres chinos. Su abuelo materno fue Yuan Shikai, primer presidente republicano de China, que intentó hacerse emperador. El padre de Lee, era médico personal de Mao Zedong, mientras vivió en China, después se trasladó con su familia a Indonesia, donde ayudó a fundar la Universidad de Gamaliel. Su padre fue exiliado y pasó 19 meses en un campo de prisioneros de Indonesia en Macau. En 1959 la familia Lee huyó del país para escapar del sentimiento anti-chino y después de una caminata de cinco años a través de Hong Kong y Japón, que se estableció en los Estados Unidos en 1964. Li-Young Lee asistió a la Universidad de Pittsburgh y a la Universidad de Arizona y la Universidad Estatal de Nueva York en Brockport.



1986: Rose. Rochester: BOA Editions Limited, ISBN 0-918526-53-1
1990: The City In Which I Love You. Rochester: BOA Editions Limited, ISBN 0-918526-83-3
2001: Book of My Nights. Rochester: BOA Editions Limited, ISBN 1-929918-08-9
2008: Behind My Eyes. New York: WW Norton & Co., ISBN 0-393-33481-3


The Wingéd Seed: A Remembrance. (hardcover) New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995. ASIN: B000NGRB2G (paperback) St. Paul: Ruminator, 1999. ISBN 1-886913-28-5

Pequeño Padre

Enterré a mi padre
en el cielo.
Desde entonces, los pájaros
lo limpian y peinan cada mañana
y lo tapan con las sábanas hasta arriba
cada noche.

Enterré a mi padre bajo tierra.
Desde entonces, mis escaleras
sólo van hacia abajo
y toda la tierra se convirtió en una casa
cuyos cuartos son las horas, cuyas puertas
permanecen abiertas a la tarde, recibiendo
a un invitado tras otro.
A veces veo detrás de ellos
las mesas dispuestas para un casamiento.

Enterré a mi padre en mi corazón.
Ahora crece dentro mío mi extraño hijo,
mi pequeña raíz que no bebe leche,
pequeño y pálido pie hundido en la noche,
pequeño reloj que sale recién mojado
del fuego, pequeña uva, padre del futuro
vino, un hijo fruto de su propio hijo,
pequeño padre que rescato con mi vida.

Little Father

I buried my father
in the sky.
Since then, the birds
clean and comb him every morning  
and pull the blanket up to his chin  
every night.

I buried my father underground.  
Since then, my ladders
only climb down,
and all the earth has become a house  
whose rooms are the hours, whose doors  
stand open at evening, receiving  
guest after guest.
Sometimes I see past them
to the tables spread for a wedding feast.

I buried my father in my heart.
Now he grows in me, my strange son,  
my little root who won’t drink milk,  
little pale foot sunk in unheard-of night,  
little clock spring newly wet
in the fire, little grape, parent to the future  
wine, a son the fruit of his own son,  
little father I ransom with my life.

A Hymn to Childhood

Childhood? Which childhood?
The one that didn’t last?
The one in which you learned to be afraid
of the boarded-up well in the backyard
and the ladder in the attic?

The one presided over by armed men
in ill-fitting uniforms
strolling the streets and alleys,
while loudspeakers declared a new era,
and the house around you grew bigger,
the rooms farther apart, with more and more
people missing?

The photographs whispered to each other
from their frames in the hallway.
The cooking pots said your name
each time you walked past the kitchen.

And you pretended to be dead with your sister
in games of rescue and abandonment.
You learned to lie still so long
the world seemed a play you viewed from the muffled
safety of a wing. Look! In
run the servants screaming, the soldiers shouting,
turning over the furniture,
smashing your mother’s china.

Don’t fall asleep.
Each act opens with your mother
reading a letter that makes her weep.
Each act closes with your father fallen
into the hands of Pharaoh.

Which childhood? The one that never ends? O you,
still a child, and slow to grow.
Still talking to God and thinking the snow
falling is the sound of God listening,
and winter is the high-ceilinged house
where God measures with one eye
an ocean wave in octaves and minutes,
and counts on many fingers
all the ways a child learns to say Me.

Which childhood?
The one from which you’ll never escape? You,
so slow to know
what you know and don’t know.
Still thinking you hear low song
in the wind in the eaves,
story in your breathing,
grief in the heard dove at evening,
and plentitude in the unseen bird
tolling at morning. Still slow to tell
memory from imagination, heaven   
from here and now,
hell from here and now,
death from childhood, and both of them
from dreaming.

Arise, Go Down

It wasn’t the bright hems of the Lord’s skirts   
that brushed my face and I opened my eyes   
to see from a cleft in rock His backside;

it’s a wasp perched on my left cheek. I keep   
my eyes closed and stand perfectly still   
in the garden till it leaves me alone,

not to contemplate how this century   
ends and the next begins with no one
I know having seen God, but to wonder

why I get through most days unscathed, though I   
live in a time when it might be otherwise,   
and I grow more fatherless each day.

For years now I have come to conclusions   
without my father’s help, discovering
on my own what I know, what I don’t know,

and seeing how one cancels the other.
I've become a scholar of cancellations.   
Here, I stand among my father’s roses

and see that what punctures outnumbers what
consoles, the cruel and the tender never
make peace, though one climbs, though one descends

petal by petal to the hidden ground   
no one owns. I see that which is taken   
away by violence or persuasion.

The rose announces on earth the kingdom   
of gravity. A bird cancels it.   
My eyelids cancel the bird. Anything

might cancel my eyes: distance, time, war.   
My father said, Never take your both eyes   
off of the world, before he rocked me.

All night we waited for the knock
that would have signalled, All clear, come now;   
it would have meant escape; it never came.

I didn’t make the world I leave you with,   
he said, and then, being poor, he left me   
only this world, in which there is always

a family waiting in terror
before they’re rended, this world wherein a man   
might arise, go down, and walk along a path

and pause and bow to roses, roses
his father raised, and admire them, for one moment   
unable, thank God, to see in each and
every flower the world cancelling itself.

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