crumbling bricks and telephone wires
verdant shrubs and trees
their balancing act performed
by the cobbled brookside path
crooked and narrow, their angles a mirror
of backs bent under the day’s burden
Shelly Bryant divides her year between Shanghai and Singapore, working as a teacher, writer, researcher, and translator. She is the author of six volumes of poetry and a pair of travel guides for the cities of Suzhou and Shanghai. She has translated work from the Chinese for Penguin Books, Epigram Publishing, the National Library Board in Singapore, Giramondo Books, and Rinchen Books. Shelly’s poetry has appeared in journals, magazines, and websites around the world, as well as in several art exhibitions. Her translation of Sheng Keyi’s Northern Girls was longlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize in 2012. You can visit her website at http://shellybryant.com.