'Plastic Sea' by Dai Weina

Translated from the Chinese by Liang Yujing


For the last time, eyes closed, I breathe and stop breathing. I practise disappearing.
It’s blue, too blue to be true, like a circle of light-blue plastic boards.
Plastic sea. Plastic vows.
I’m finally walking barefoot in the world constructed by my ideas,
where eternal love, a survival rule, happens every day.


Dolphins are flying. The humans outside still crawling.
Coconut trees stick out their fat butts, revealing gravidity lines.
I accidentally fall in love with the unwieldy flowers
dropping on the sands, the dazed little lizards crossing the road, the geckos spying at the centre of the ceiling, the red ants on the open-air toilet. In the tropics filled with wild emotions, thunder sounds like a belch.
I realise I have to create a man who loves me, who timidly hands over a white towel beside a bathtub of seawater, to prove my presence.


Accidentally again, I make him too old, even the wind can’t move
those tender, tear-shedding age spots.
I say, Dress up, there’s a grand stage in the sea – go there
and put on the sardine’s skin and the musk-crab’s pincers.
In so doing you can pierce the illusion I created and return to reality.

I will take back all this, folding up days and nights, and pour the sea into a goblet.
All blue in the glass. A world of blue. Too real to be true.
Plastic sea. Plastic vows.
Blue. Blue.


塑料做的大海

最后–次呼吸闭眼停止换气。我练习消失
是蓝色,蓝得假,像–圈浅蓝色的塑料板
塑料做的大海,塑料做的誓言
我终于赤足走在我意念构建的世界
这荒地老每日发生,相爱是生存法则

海豚是飞的,外面的人类还在爬行
椰子树撅起的肥臀露着妊娠纹
我一不小心爱上坠落沙地的
笨重的花,过马路发呆的小蜥蜴,天花板中央的壁虎探子
和露天马桶上的红蚂蚁
热带总是这样感情凶猛,天公打雷如打嗝儿
我意识到需要创造一个爱我的男人,在盛满海水的浴缸旁
怯生生递上白毛巾,证明我的此刻
又是一个不小心,我把他造得太老了,风都刮不动
会落泪的,温柔的老年斑
我说扮上吧,海水中央有一座大戏台——你过去
换上沙丁鱼的皮肤和关公蟹的凶器
这样你就能刺破我制造的幻象,回到真实
我会收回这一切,把日夜折叠,把大海灌进高脚杯
杯子里全是蓝色。一世界的蓝色。真得太假
塑料做的大海,塑料做的誓言
蓝色,蓝色


These poems appear in The Lifted Brow #35. Get your copy here.

Dai Weina is a Chinese poet, short story writer and playwright based in Beijing. She is the editor-in-chief of Guangnian (Light Year).