Monody to the Murmuring Mountain, Clefting – Changming Yuan

Monody to the Murmuring Mountain

Twenty minimeters of pink petals.

Twenty minimetres of stretch and reach

Floral foil, twenty minimeters

Of soil, grass, dew, bush

Sitting in green meditation about

The balance between yin and yang

Myriad of leaves,

Falling down with mists

Of last night approaching – twenty minimeters

Of ethereal presence, kissing

The thick ridges – is the soul

The melody of equanimity?

Insects sloughing off

In chameleon-rhythms.

You stopped as you heard them

Twenty minimeters of dandelions rolling against

The vastness of sky and mountain



Between two high notes

The melody gives a crack

Long enough

To allow my entire selfhood to enter

Like a fish jumping back

Into the night water

Both the fish and I leave no

Trace behind us, and the world

Remains undisturbed as we swim

Deeper and deeper in blue silence

Upon my return, I find the music

Still going on, while the fish has

Disappeared into the unknown


Yuan Changming published monographs on translation before leaving China. Currently, Yuan lives in Vancouver, where he edits Poetry Pacific with Allen Qing Yuan. Credits include ten Pushcart nominations, Best of the Best Canadian Poetry (2008-17) and BestNewPoemsOnline among others.  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *