Words as Grain

Duo Duo


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Yale University Press
22 June 2021
ISBN: 9780300227390
280 pages

From the publisher

An authoritative new collection by one of China's most lauded poets

While keeping a cautious distance from literary trends and labeling, Duo Duo has emerged as one of the world's preeminent poets. His poems respond to the Chinese political landscape from the Cultural Revolution to the Tiananmen Square tragedy and beyond. Some are written from the vantage point of exile abroad, others in his homeland, but all inscribe an ache for original expression, a sense of place, and the essence of language. In exacting renderings by award-winning translator Lucas Klein, this career-spanning anthology features Duo Duo's entire oeuvre since his return to China in 2004, as well as a representative selection of his earlier poems, presenting nearly five decades of work. This collection traces the evolution, in a particular historical context and cultural tradition, of one of the most vibrant poets at work in the world today.