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—For Xia

Be­tween the gray walls and a burst of chop­ping sounds, morn­ing comes, bun­dled and sliced, and van­ishes with the par­a­lyzed souls of the chopped veg­eta­bles.

Light and dark­ness pass through my pupils. How do I know the dif­fer­ence?

Sit­ting in the rust, I can’t tell if it’s the shine on the shack­les in the jail or the nat­u­ral light of Na­ture from out­side the walls.

Day­light be­trays ev­ery­thing, the splen­did sun stunned.

Morn­ing stretches and stretches in vain. You are far away— but not too far to col­lect the love of my night. Liu Xiaobo

(Trans­lated from the Chi­nese by Ming Di)

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