An Instant Of Immortality Primer

By Zang Di Translated

By Eleanor Goodman

In the remains of reason I am aware
that the final glance won’t
vanish in an ocean’s cold indifference. Returning to reality,
the borders are blurry. Thankfully time’s caverns
ward off time’s alterations,
still deep and silent within life’s secrets;
dandelions, purslane, moongrass,
the shadows of grapevines and hawthorns
preserve the sequence of the caverns’ entrances—
I enter from this side, and the dark is the direction of darkness
as though in the heaviness of loss
the dark also offers the benevolence of darkness;
you enter from that side, that gradually shortening
and for me ever unnamable distance;
separated by life and death, you and I
fumble about, even more stubborn than darkness,
and so can still unite in an embrace—
as though with a bit of effort, an instant of immortality
will accede to my hand holding
that little shovel you once used.

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