Brief bio sketch

Lloyd Haft (1946- ) was born in Sheboygan, Wisconsin USA and lived as a boy in Wisconsin, Louisiana and Kansas. In 1968 he graduated from Harvard College and went to Leiden, The Netherlands for graduate study in Chinese (M. A. 1973, Ph. D. 1981). From 1973 to 2004 he taught Chinese language and literature, mostly poetry, at Leiden. His sinological publications include Pien Chih-lin: A Study in Modern Chinese Poetry (1983/2011; published in Chinese translation as 发现卞之琳: 一位西方学者的探索之旅 in 2010) and Zhou Mengdie’s Poetry of Consciousness (2006). His most recent book, a liberal modern Dutch reading of Laozi's Daode jing, was published as Lau-tze's vele wegen by Synthese in September 2017.



He has translated extensively into English from the Dutch of Herman Gorter and Willem Hussem, and from the Chinese of various poets including Lo Fu, Yang Lingye, Bian Zhilin and Zhou Mengdie.



Since the 1980s he has also been active as a poet writing in Dutch and English. He was awarded the Jan Campert Prize for his 1993 bilingual volume Atlantis and the Ida Gerhardt Prize for his 2003 Dutch free-verse readings of the Psalms (republished by Uitgeverij Vesuvius in 2011). His newer poems are published (some republished) on this blog.



After early retirement in 2004, for a number of years Lloyd Haft spent much of his time in Taiwan with his wife Katie Su. In addition to writing and translating, his interests include Song-dynasty philosophy and taiji quan. He sings in the choir of a Roman Catholic church of the Eastern Rite in The Hague.



Thursday, February 24, 2011

以此齋詩譜三首


(一)鄉村客運
       ──於美國

從公共汽車裡我望見
一位打著蝴蝶領結的男孩
站在翠綠的柳枝下;

他在哭泣,身體彎曲
四下裡的寂靜很合他的身材
緊繃而適宜。
我知道是我:
他將自己的痛苦緊緊地貼近自己
猶如將花朵緊貼在他的胸口。

照料他的貴婦──
不是柳樹,卻在柳陰中──
我自己就是她,那個在一種綠色的灰暗裡

向下的懸垂,
壟罩整個汽車的雨水
帶著篤篤的,聽得見的壓抑。

雖然他知道這一切,但那位乘客
(我自己仍然是)無法避免
突然間另一個人在身後

站起,從他的口袋中
掏出一枚金飾
交給司機

──也無法避免在此之後雨水
下得沒完沒了越來越迅猛,灰暗
下得沒完沒了持續下去。


(二)冰雹
    ──於北京

可以發生得如此突兀:
像現在天空滿是
由水變成的石頭。

是由於南方的湖水,
西部的沙漠嗎?
不要在地球上尋找解釋,因為

這是現實。
因此每人都戴着
面具。 平靜、耐心,

遠在上萬條街道的
角落上空,
有一輛白色公共汽車一動不動。


(三)相片

為了能夠抓住你
我不得不將你
減少一維:深度。

不要驚訝,此時你
在我的拘押中變成另一個人──

你一向如此
(雖然我從未用雙手抓住過你)。


漢樂逸荷語原著,中文轉載自馬高明、柯雷編譯之《荷蘭現代詩選》,1988年,桂林市漓江出版社。