The Woman Mending Clothes By Ai Qing

The woman mending clothes sits by the roadside.
When people pass by
Dust rises up,
Dust coats her kerchief,
Dust greys her clothes.

Her baby begins crying,
The child’s tears are dried by the sun;
She does not notice.
Silently she thinks of her home,
Its shelter destroyed by gunfire.
Silently she mends clothes for people,
And lets her child’s eyes,
Those poor reddened eyes,
Stare at the empty basket.

The woman mending clothes sits by the roadside.
The road stretches away endlessly.
She mends socks for some passerby,
And the passerby goes on.

p.s. If you have the original of this poem in Chinese, please comment.

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