Summer 2008 • Vol. XXX No. 3 PoetryJuly 1, 2008 |

Sparrows

—During Mao's "four pests" campaign against four evils: rats, flies, mosquitoes, and sparrows. I want to pull one down, look into its eye—     there would be a village, thatch, megaphone, and the tops of fists.     Stub of sun. Villagers with pots and pans that banged.     We still live in an italicized world. Those trees by the ocean: the slanted ones,     imply hands and knees.

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Victoria Chang’s forthcoming book of poems, With My Back to the World, will be published in 2024 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Her latest book of poetry is The Trees Witness Everything (Copper Canyon Press, 2022) and her nonfiction book, Dear Memory (Milkweed Editions), was published in 2021. OBIT (Copper Canyon Press, 2020), received the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Poetry, and the PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry.

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Flower in the Wind, 1963

By Victoria Chang

—During Mao's "four pests" campaign against four evils: rats, flies, mosquitoes, and sparrows. I want to pull one down, look into its eye—     there would be a village, thatch, megaphone, […]

Wheat, 1957

By Victoria Chang

—During Mao's "four pests" campaign against four evils: rats, flies, mosquitoes, and sparrows. I want to pull one down, look into its eye—     there would be a village, thatch, megaphone, […]

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