the Light

Liang Xinyu
FINALIST in the Charles Simic Tribute Contest

You hold the darkness of Belgrade in your hand

use it as paint in the sunlight,

to draw the outline of the past life.

You animate and give substance,

even a spoon or knife

tell us about their strangeness.

You open the door to history

you lead us to look into the paradise of philosophy

with your short lines.

I praise it in the complex lines:

You evoke a dark Eastern Europe of the mind with the frank and accessible language

You counter the darkness of political structures with the sanctifying light of art

You chant the soul of philosophy to us with inimitable surrealism.

then silence……

But "the highest levels of consciousness are wordless."

Verity is pitch-black in your eyes.

Admittedly, a galactic traveler has helped you

find a way out of the black

and to the new light at the end of your time.

Liang Xinyu is a 15-year-old girl studies in the Dalian Yuming Senior High School, China. Her works are published in《少年诗刊》(China),《少年文艺》(China), press pause, and the Battering Ram. She was chosen as one of two finalists in the Charles Simic tribute poetry contest and won the National Excellence Award in Lu Xun Youth Literature Award. One of her essays has been shortlisted for Theology category in the 2023 John Locke global essay competition.

"Sunlight and Dogwoods" by fdtate is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

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A magazine for teen writers—by teen writers. Under the Madness brings together student editors from across New Hampshire under the mentorship of the state poet laureate to focus on the experiences of teens from around the world. Whether you live in Berlin, NH, or Berlin, Germany—whether you wake up every day in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North or South America—we’re interested in reading you!