Lantern Review: A Journal of Asian American Poetry
Issue 4 | Winter 2012
Two Chinese Silences
The following are poems from my series in progress, 100 Chinese Silences. These are poems that parody or riff on other poets’ poems about China or Asian themes. The poems began as a response to Billy Collins’s “Grave,” which speaks of a Chinese belief in “one hundred kinds of silence”—only to admit later in the poem that this idea was “just made up.” I took it upon myself to write these Chinese silences, beginning by responding to poems by Billy Collins and then expanding into responses to other poets, from David Ferry to Gary Snyder.
—Timothy Yu, 2012