Notes on the Mosquito: Selected Poems

Overview

The internationally renowned Chinese poet’s first collection to appear in English.
“In the crevices of history, mosquitoes are everywhere,” Xi Chuan writes. Notes on the Mosquito introduces English readers to one of the most revered poets of contemporary China. Gaining recognition as a post-Misty poet in the late ’80s, Xi Chuan was famous for his condensed, numinous lyricism, and for radiating classical Chinese influences as much as Western modernist traditions. After the ...
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Overview

The internationally renowned Chinese poet’s first collection to appear in English.
“In the crevices of history, mosquitoes are everywhere,” Xi Chuan writes. Notes on the Mosquito introduces English readers to one of the most revered poets of contemporary China. Gaining recognition as a post-Misty poet in the late ’80s, Xi Chuan was famous for his condensed, numinous lyricism, and for radiating classical Chinese influences as much as Western modernist traditions. After the crushing failure of Tiananmen Square and the death of two of his closest friends, he stopped writing for three years. He re-emerged transformed: he began writing meditative, expansive prose poems that dismantled the aestheticism and musicality of his previous self. Divided into two sections that hinge around this formal break, Notes on the Mosquito offers the greatest hits of a deeply engaging poet, whose work intertwines the mountains and roads of Xinjiang with insects and mythical beasts, ghosts and sacred spirits with chess and a Sanskrit inscription.
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Editorial Reviews

The Believer
In 1988, when he was twenty-five, Xi Chuan and some friends launched an unofficial literary journal, Tendency. At the time, he was translating Ezra Pound and Tomas Tranströmer, Czeslaw Milosz and Jorge Luis Borges, and his own writing suggests a corresponding sophistication and aesthetic range.— Robert Hass
Bookslut

What unites [Chuan's] lyric poems and his essay-poems is that they all carry a sense of the world's plentitude and of the world's puzzlement. The plentitude itself is bewildering and the bewilderment has a certain beauty.

Robert Hass - The Believer
“In 1988, when he was twenty-five, Xi Chuan and some friends launched an unofficial literary journal, Tendency. At the time, he was translating Ezra Pound and Tomas Tranströmer, Czeslaw Milosz and Jorge Luis Borges, and his own writing suggests a corresponding sophistication and aesthetic range.”
Poetry International Web
“Xi Chuan is one of the most influential poets in contemporary China.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811219877
  • Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
  • Publication date: 4/12/2012
  • Edition description: Bilingual
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 1,071,977
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Xi Chuan, born in 1963 in Xuzhou, Jiangsu province, is a poet, essayist, and translator. He currently teaches classical Chinese literature at the Central Academy for Fine Arts. His numerous prizes include the Modern Chinese Poetry Award (1994), the national Lu Xun Prize for Literature (2001), and the Zhuang Zhongwen Prize for Literature (2003).

Lucas Klein is a writer, translator, and editor of Cipher-Journal.com. He is Assistant Professor in the Department of Chinese, Translation, and Linguistics at the City University of Hong Kong.

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