Poem for Wang Ning

Publications Cheng Man Ching Archive

Poem for Wang Ning by Michael Kirmes-Seitz

Chinese World of Signs
For Wang Ning

Poem for Wang Ning

Much of that which
enchants us
Comes from far away
Not guarded
By an escort
Made of flesh and blood
But of
Earth and water.

It is spoken about riddles
Left unsolved
Because their makers
Were too wise
For the keys
To be preserved.

The worth of the ink
Does not measure itself
Solely by the expression
Of the hand and
The density
Of the description
But also
By the paper
Upon which
It is carried.

Perhaps it is
In the Stars
To read
From which direction
They shine
But in the end
It has been a matter for sailors
Who ceased to see the shore.

Poem for Wang NingThe clay fragments
Running the Things
to the ground
Are from one
And the selfsame soil.

When everything out of
Ashes grows
There is a case
For everything to be in every
Wind blown.
The world is little
And when it has to
It fits into a cupped hand.

The faster the images
The more delicate
the developing signs.

It may happen
That the owner
Of the waterhole
Comes away empty-handed.

An agreement should
Take place and
The cross spirit
Is with its
Widely sweeping movements
the calming pole.

Some other tries
With arms crossed
The ways of the dragons
To govern
Those incessantly in search
of the
Great fire-eater.

The guardians of the well
Sprinkle salt
Into the stone wounds.
The trickles are unteachable
They want to
Intensify the gentleness
Into ecstasy.

by Michael Kirmes-Seitz

Translated by Taiji Forum

Exhibition “Calligraphies by Wang Ning”