"If Yang Lian is new to you, I hope it spurs you on to read more of this extraordinary poet. If you have read him before, then you will find familiar themes here: the search for a mature wisdom, the need to readjust the balance between modernism and the classical heritage, the impossibility of giving easy solutions to the problem of evil and suffering in this world. There is also a new sense of his coming to terms with the devastating loss of his mother when he was a teenager, which is when he began writing poetry, as well as intimate and tenderly-voiced declarations of the power of love in its many forms. There is, too, a growing sense of poetry as a weapon in the fight to heal this planet of ours, so wounded by greed, war, exploitation and plunder.
This is large poetry, deep poetry, poetry that concerns itself with the great human themes. This is poetry that can change your life. " —Brian Holton, from the Afterword to this volume