From “The Story of a Bird,” Liao Yiwu’s introduction to Liu Xia’s collection Empty Chairs (Graywolf Press, 2015):
When we first met, we were very young, and knew nothing but writing poetry. The bird called Liu Xia lived in a large, cage-like room on the twenty-second floor of a building on West Double Elm Tree Lane in Beijing. I traveled from Sichuan to meet her and climbed up the stairs as the elevator was broken. From the moment I knocked on the cage door, Liu Xia never stopped giggling. Her chin became pointy when she smiled, and she laughed like a bird, unrestrained. No wonder she wrote this:
Then, we started to hate winter,
the long slumber.
We’d put a red lamp
so its light would tell our bird
we were waiting.
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.