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Though nobody wants it

Some say the blood is not red enough

Others find the chambers too narrow

Still others think the coronary arteries

Stained with too many feelings


                 from; Single Last Sale by Changming Yuan







South China Cicada

Y, Y

Human Culture


Siamese Stanzas: Snowflakes

Single Last Sale

Truncated Truths: My Crow

Like Birds, Like Humans

Natural Confrontations 

Directory of Destinies




1 – BIOGRAPHY:  Changming Yuan


Changming Yuan, 4-time Pushcart nominee and author of Allen Qing Yuan, grew up in rural China, holds a PhD in English, tutors, and edits Poetry Pacific in Vancouver. Yuan's poetry appears in 700 literary journals/anthologies across 26 countries, including Asian Literary Review, Best Canadian Poetry, BestNewPoemsOnline, LiNQ, London Magazine, Paris/Atlantic, Poetry Salzburg, SNAD, Taj Mahal Review, Threepenny Review and Two Thirds North.  







South China Cicada


no human ear has ever heard of you

      cloistering yourself deep in the soil

silently sucking all sounds from roots

      for more than thirteen years in a row

      until high up on a summer painted twig

you slough off your earthly self

        pouring all your being in a single song

        before the sun sets for the yellow leaf




Y, Y


yea, yeah, yes, with your

yellowish skin, you enjoy

meditating within the shape of

a wishbone, inside the broken wing

of an oriental bird strayed, or

in a larger sense, you look like

the surfacing tail of a pacific whale

who yells low, but whose voice reaches afar

far beyond a whole continent, to a remote village

near the yellow river, where you used to sunbathe

rice stems, reed leaves, cotton skeletons

with a fork made of a single horn-shaped twig

when you were a barefooted country boy

on the other side of this new world




Human Culture


when i wake up

      and open my eyes

i see all my dreams

      bounced back from the frames


when i take a shower

      and start to sing

i taste my song tart

      behind the blurring curtain


when i strive to step 

      out of my humble house

i feel fences quarreling hard

      in the whole neighborhood


when i visit around and 

      do some blind sightseeing

i smell blood stained

      along the castle foot


finally i flee from this world

      and hide myself far away

i still seem to hear

      the glaring cries from the great wall


delicately hung is this earth

        a bluish cage in the universe







Golden teeth glistening 

In the mouth of the city

Silver clouds colliding  

At the tongue tip of day


Bite off all darkness

They whispered

And chew the season well.




Siamese Stanzas: Snowflakes



as little noise

as much leisure

as possible

you came

to perch

at this cold spot of time

like a pale word

fallen on the wasteland


merely to melt

          a voiceless being soft and quiet 

never heard before you 

yet ready to vanish 

herald tracelessly 

the glaring in the green 

thunder wind 


summer time 





Single Last Sale


You’ve long since sold out

Both your sweat and blood

Now you try to sell your heart

Though nobody wants it

Some say the blood is not red enough

Others find the chambers too narrow

Still others think the coronary arteries

Stained with too many feelings

You peddle around, chanting aloud

From street to street

With your heart still fresh

Beating like a frog in your hands

You hope to sell it for a glass of water

Just to cool down your burning voice

So you do not have to sell your soul

Like all other hawkers in the market

Well satiated, but hardly heart-felt





Truncated Truths: My Crow


Each crow you have seen

Has a quasi white soul

That used to dwell in the body

Of one of your closest ancestors


He comes down all the way just to tell you

His little secret, the way he has flown out 

Of darkness, the fact both his body and heart

Are filled with shadows, the truth about

Being a dissident, that unwanted color


Hidden in your own heart is there also a crow

Much blacker than his spirits 

But less so than his feathers





Like Birds, Like Humans


All doors are man-made

Even those in hell and heaven

Behind every door

Is either a home

Or a prison cell

More often both

Than neither

The only living space without a door

Is a nest or the sky

Both for birds

Neither for man




Natural Confrontations 




A gossamer-like breeze 

Left far behind

By a running dog

Tries to strike

The stagnated twilight

Hanging above the whole city

Before the storm sets in



As if right from heaven

A snowy seagull charges down

Trying to pick up the entire ocean

With its bold beak

As the tsunami raises

All its fierce fists

In sweeping protection 

Against earth’s agitation

In foamy darkness


Plum Blossom


Without a single leaf

Grass-dyed or sun-painted

To highlight it  

But on a skeletal twig

Glazed with dark elegies  

A bud is blooming, bold and blatant

Like a drop of blood

As if to show off, to challenge

The entire season

When whims and wishes

Are all frozen like the landscape




Directory of Destinies

 - Believe it or not, the ancient Chinese 5-Agent Principle accounts for us all.


1/ Water (born in a year ending in 2 or 3)

-helps wood but hinders fire; helped by metal but hindered by earth

with her transparent tenderness

coded with colorless violence

she is always ready to support

or sink the powerful boat

sailing south


2/ Wood (born in a year ending 4 or 5)

-helps fire but hinders earth; helped by water but hindered by metal

rings in rings have been opened or broken

like echoes that roll from home to home

each containing fragments of green

trying to tell their tales

     from the forest’s depths


3/ Fire (born in a year ending 6 or 7)

-helps earth but hinders metal; helped by wood but hindered by water

your soft power bursting from your ribcage

as enthusiastic as a phoenix is supposed to be

when you fly your lipless kisses

you reach out your hearts

until they are all broken


4/ Earth (born in a year ending in 8 or 9)

-helps metal but hinders water; helped by fire but hindered by wood

i think not; therefore, I am not

what I am, but I have a color

the skin my heart wears inside out

tattooed intricately

with footprints of history


5/ Metal (born in a year ending in 0 or 1)

-helps water but hinders wood; helped by earth but hindered by fire

he used to be totally dull-colored

because he came from the earth’s inside

now he has become a super-conductor

for cold words, hot pictures and light itself

all being transmitted through his throat 



3 - Publishing History

South China Cicada  Published by Byline 2005, Other Voices 2006, Poetalk 2007.

Y, Y  Published by Kin, and Outside in Literary and Travel 2013.

Human Culture  Published by Exquisite Corpse, and London Magazine 2006.

Skyline   Published by PANK 2013. 

Siamese Stanzas: Snowflakes   Published by dANDelion 2006, Dalhousie Review 2007, and Sein und Werden 2012. 

Single Last Sale   Published by Blue Fifth Review and BestNewPoemsOnline 2011. 

Truncated Truths: My Crow   Published by RHINO 2012.

Like Birds, Like Humans  Published by Nashwaak Review 2010, Thoughtsmith  2011 and Ucity Review 2012. 

Plum Blossom  Published by Cave Moon Press 2011, the Boiler 2012, Rufous City Review 2013. 

Directory of Destinies  Published by Iodine 2007, Euphemism 2012, and Scholars & Rogues 2013.


4 - Afterword

Email Poetry Kit - info@poetrykit.org    - if you would like to tell us what you think. 

We are looking for other poets to feature in this series, and are open to submissions.  Please send one poem and a short bio to - info@poetrykit.org

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