The maiden rests the zither upon her knees. I sorrow and fear, preoccupied with farewells. Coaxed by her suave touch, music pellucid like the wind wafts through checkered windows toward a brilliant moon. Beyond the sculpted balustrade— night air, crystalline. Her delicate fingering rouses my spirit. Listen — how at midnight people stop, grow quiet.
— translated from the Chinese by Paul Watsky and Alex To