THE WRITERS POST
the magazine of
Literature & Literature-in-translation.
VOLUME 5 NUMBER 1
GOLDEN FALL IN THE OLD TOWN
When leaves in maplewoods turn redder yet,
he smells the sandarac scent all wafting hereabout
Oh, these resplendent autum on strange soil!
He still longs for one golden fall in his old town,
misses its streets at purplish dusk,
someone's white dress while she walked in a haze,
her heels' soft whispers from plain clogs of wood,
marking a time that haunts his thoughts or dreams.
He still recalls a sky of silent clouds,
the river lying hidden by dark mists,
those dawns with yet no sunshine on the streets,
the chill that breathed sheer rapture through his
He still holds them,
dead butterflies from pages of old tomes
and, pressed inside a boy's notebook, love flowers
for casual trysts kept after each school day
or for some girl he timidly pursued.
As fall and his own muse come back, the fool
still hugs a poet's dream of beauty for the world,
strewing the sidewalk with his lonesome steps
and wandering like some twilit cloud astray.
He wants to ask
how many shifts a human life must take.
The train moves on and lingers at no stop,
and yet those flowers or butterflies still stir
the memory of a golden fall in his old town.
Today,he stands beneath this gorgeous maplewood
and from years past sees the blood of flame trees.
Translated by HUYNH SANH THONG
· THE WRITERS POST (ISSN: 1527-5467),
the magazine of Literature & Literature-in-translation.
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