Who is sitting in the heavens and staring at me?
Who is sitting in the golden palace of tomorrow?
Who is smiling?
Golden staff in his hand
flashes a dazzling light.
Ah, the flashes of lightning-
interweave over my head…
I walked into the crystalline corridor of the time-
I want to open
the doors of gold.
Lines of words in the sun-
Singing to me in the sky-
I want to find
the volumes of gold poems
on the shores of the new century
to build the city of gold.
Laozi with rosy cheek and white hair-
Smiles at me in the clouds,
A phoenix dances trippingly
and carries with it, a book of gold.
Lines of mysterious words
made my eyes drunken,
countless giant figures
came towards me from the clouds.
Ages through seventy million years
emerged leisurely before my eyes,
the cities of gold
surrounded with crystalline gardens.
A sky of sapphire
sent out a colorful miraculous brightness,
onto green hills of jasper,
dragons and phoenixes were flying
with majestical palace of gold,
the airy pavilions and pagodas
stood within the purple-red clouds
riding the colorful husbands and wives,
sprinkling the colorful flowers.
I opened the door to a golden palace,
saw the rows of scrolls of gold,
a giant who had the haloes all over his body-
there was a golden sun over his head.
Smiling, he picked up the books of gold
recited the sacred verses-
Intoxicated with the miraculous wonderful words
I was enveloped with purple-gold flames.
A golden lotus
bloomed beneath my feet,
lifted up my body,
wafting it up out of the golden palace
The red clouds
drifted by my side,
in the far distance I saw
another golden paradise
the leisurely bells
calling to me.
There- countless giants
roamed in a golden garden,
with skies of ruby,
rounds of sun
like the golden lotus
blooming in the sky,
intoxicating fragrances of flowers
like sweet good wine,
laden with the dazzling diamonds,
in bloom for a thousand years,
this land of gold
inlaid with the gems.
The pavilions of gold were
strewn at random, clustered in multitude.
Someone was playing chess
Someone was chatting…
happy and comfortable.
flying in the sky,
husbands and wives
Beside an old man I approached
as if he were waiting for me
in this golden pavilion.
He opened an ancient sword casket-
A glittering ancient sword
engraved with abstruse words and expressions,
which were clear and transparent, like lightning,
dimly glowed with purplish-red patterns.
He told me a metaphysical epic:
The sword came from nine billions years ago,
made from hundreds of millions of suns.
It was a sacred sword of the sun-
It could pierce the rocks of time,
open layer after layer of skies,
let the sacred fires forge the heaven and the earth
into golden paradises.
The old man’s eyes were deep, archaic, difficult to discern-
Dimly showing the joyful flames.
He let me take this sword
to fly towards a new golden paradise:
The huge golden lotus floated leisurely-
I flew among the skies, for a thousand miles.
loomed impressively in front of my eyes
Mountainous figures of giants
walked about in front of the pyramid,
the huge pyramids of gold
far taller than the mountains.
The giant trees of gold
like a forest
stood in the sky
laden with the stars.
The multi-colored propitious clouds
were like a colossal bird
in a silvery sky,
I came to the front of a pyramid-
a door was opening wide for me,
a group of blond giants
sat with smiles in the grand palace.
An old and great holy man
recited in monotone.
The temple was painted with the magical symbols
and giant portraits of Gods.
The palace was full of silvery white light
blooming with magnificent flowers,
a peal of wonderful mellifluous bells
that made one suddenly forget all time.
I heard an immemorial verse
that was written hundreds of millions of years past,
relating countless eras of giants,
the creation of the holy kingdoms of heaven.
Their wisdom was sacred and great
knowing, omniscently, the past and the future of the universe.
They flew freely among the skies
landed on the millions of planets in the universe.
They altered time per one’s pleasure,
encompassed other powers, such as-
turning stone into gold,
making gold bloom into flowers.
They were like the bulbous sun,
which could erupt with sacred flames
let all things blaze in raging flames..
Manifest imagination into reality..
They landed on planets
establishing golden paradises
and with their magical, cryptic wisdom
built platinum cities.
I saw the splendid words
spied from the volume of gold
and the magical wonderful halos
rotating like colorful lightning in the sky.
I came to another wonderful planet,
saw a massive monumental edifice of platinum,
the whole city, an intricate work of art
emanating, softly, a brilliant white light.
A huge round square
encased unearthly works.
Giants of great stature
came and went leisurely in the street.
They wore spartan, common clothing
covering their bodies,
all with smiles upon their faces,
both men and women looked beautiful.
They spoke a wonderful language
intriguing and pleasant as welcome music.
Some of them travelled by spaceship
flying around silently in the sky.
I walked into a towering edifice of platinum-
saw a magnificent hall,
its platinum walls were inlaid with gems,
among which was a row of unusual instruments.
Their eyes were like bright springs
and they wore multi-colored clothes.
Some were operating the instruments.
Some were talking softly among themselves.
I saw a fascinating picture, a simulacrum that
drew giant planets,
arranged cities on those planets,
with crystal gardens.
I opened a crystal door-
noticed a group of men and women, who were happily,
with glittering books of gold in their hands.
Arrangements of flowers and glasses filled of golden wine
sat on the huge round table.
Golden walls were sparkling
carved with all kinds of wonderful images.
I saw a demure girl,
with sparkling golden halo above her head,
adorned in a lengthy purple-gold dress
peerless in its quality.
Pages- were marked with cryptic glyphs
or lines of ancient magic words or symbols,
each of their books were made of gold
inexplicably constructed in golden crystal.
I understood their euphonious songs-
They were singing the sacred love
They were singing great ancestors
They were recounting the civilization of the universe
Gardens filled their city, everywhere,
surrounded with the sweet rivers.
The whole earth was a piece of jade,
the clay, a translucent layer of golden sands.
I saw enormous bright, white spheres
suspended high above the city,
emanating outwards a dazzling light-
illuminating the skies and earth- bright as the crystal
The towering, great buildings stood in great numbers
As if carved by a singular piece of platinum.
Doves and colorful birds
were flying among the heavens.
A mono-train was
flying swiftly through the sky,
the streets were illuminated in bright white,
and any moving vehicle could not have been seen.
These people’s bodies were unusually strong.
Playing a wonderful game-
they piled up the pieces of great stones
arranging into grotesque works.
Similar to giant eyes
and ancient totems,
there were strange birds
covered with lightning feathers.
I saw a couple of tall lovers-
aviators, riding in their spaceship.
Their eyes were quiet and bright,
colorful halo around their bodies.
This wonderful space was gyrating leisurely
like a huge, resplendent crystal.
I said goodbye to the unusual city,
towards a space of golden light.
The cities flashed in the sky.
I flew over the layers of the sky again
and I saw a new-fangled world:
the multi-colored city of crystal.
The high towers were exquisitely carved
displaying multi-colored pearls,
layers of its eave painted with dragon and phoenix,
hung with singing golden bells.
The earth was a crystal garden,
the palaces were limpid and crystal,
huge mountains were like a transparent gems
lined with the golden trees.
I saw the tall giants-
who wore their purple clothes,
with heads of round suns,
bodies enshrined with halos.
They sat up in the main halls
singing a mellifluous song.
Some were roaming leisurely in the garden.
Some were summoning the birds in the sky.
The crystalline airy pavilions and pagodas
were beset with jewels and agates,
a huge jewel on the spire,
shining golden lights.
I saw a holy giant
sitting in the middle of a main hall
the purple-gold flame, flashed around his body,
which filled with the whole majestic main hall.
Full-bodied fragrance filled the hall
like a cup of refreshing wine.
Solemn expression was merciful and joyful,
a huge book was in his hand.
The hall was full of men and women
listening quietly to the psalms of the saints,
the lotuses were floating in the sky
where the smiling giants sat.
The golden light poured down from the sky
bathing the whole of this crystal kingdom.
The jewels above the giant towers-
the golden suns.
The golden walls of a golden tower
were carved with the lines of golden words I had glimpsed-
hovering around the dragons and phoenixes,
as if they were intonating the inspiring poems.
The smiling giants in the sky-
With wide halo flashing around their bodies,
were each dignified and tranquil,
floating in the golden translucent sky.
I flew over this crystal kingdom,
saw a vast golden mountain in the distance
sending out the brilliant lights in the sky
where the propitious clouds were blossoming.
This was a golden giant
sitting in the golden translucent sky
his body composed of thousands of millions of constellations
the golden sun rotating on his forehead.
He lit up the whole marvellous universe-
the kingdoms of heaven shone in the sky.
Here there was no the sky nor earth,
lights of pure gold emanated in every direction.
The smiling giants were sitting
on the gold-engraved pavilions.
The pavilions levitated in the translucent sky
shining the layers of purple-gold light.
A scene of multi-colored translucent mountains,
propitious clouds floating in the heavens,
large wonderful flowers blooming in the mountain peaks,
trees of pure light.
A river flowed from the sky
and with river bottom reflecting a layer of golden sand.
There were strange and beautiful birds and beasts
some like aerial phantoms.
This was a world of light.
Everything was made of light.
The divine light formed all things
and the golden paradises.
The golden giant-
shines the kingdoms of heaven within his body.
The cities of gold-
brilliant and fascinating in his bones.
I observed lines, words of incredible profundity
arranged into a huge book in the sky.
It seemed as if they were the bright stars
constituting a wonderous drawing.
There was a golden pavilion in the sky
guarded with behemoth dragons and phoenixes.
An old man with a whisk
waved to me and smiled in the pavilion,
I seem to be attracted by some sort of magic-
leisurely came to his side.
He told me the golden giant
was namely my great ancestor
This was an eternal palace-
There’s no concept of time here.
Holy light- was exactly the God.
What I witnessed was better than the heavens.
He pointed to the huge book in the sky
told me that it was the mystery of the universe.
The book contained magical wisdom,
created the countless worlds of gold.
He pointed to a pagoda in the sky,
told me that it was the temple of words.
The light turned into the sacred words,
and the words created the time of gold.
He held up a very large pearl
in which flashed the pictures (and all images).
He told me that it was the future time-
the embodiment of all the wonderful worlds.
He told me that it was another universe.
Still desiring to go to these paradises,
he gave me the magical pearl,
to let it be my future guide.
I said goodbye to the old holy man,
set afoot onto a new road towards the heavens again.
I sat in a golden pavilion-
lightly flew to the distant outer space…
Hongri Yuan, born in China in 1962, is a poet and philosopher interested particularly in creation. Representative works include Platinum City, Gold City, Golden Paradise , Gold Sun and Golden Giant. His poetry has been published in the UK, USA ,India ,New Zealand, Canada and Nigeria.
Yuanbing Zhang is a translator on Indian Review.