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A Summer Day in the Company of Ghosts

A Summer Day in the Company of Ghosts

Selected Poems

by Wang Yin, translated from the Chinese by Andrea Lingenfelter, foreword by Adonis

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“My poems are flecks of salt clinging ambivalently to a horse’s back,” Wang Yin writes. This bilingual edition is the first comprehensive collection of this important Chinese poet’s work to appear in English, translated by Andrea Lingenfelter. Readers can follow the full arc of his career, from the early, surrealist, and Deep Image–influenced work of the 1980s, when he made his debut as a post-Misty poet, through the turn toward the rawer, more immediate poetry of the nineties, and on to the existential and ineffable weavings of his more recent work. Wang’s sensibility is both cosmopolitan and lyrical, and his poetry has a subtlety and beauty that contrasts with the often physically painful imagery with which he depicts psychological reality, a reality expressed as various states of mind struggling against the suppression of memory. Shanghai winters, a winter in Katowice, a summer day with ghosts, blue shadows, petals in the darkness, an “empty lane lit up by moonlight”—the poems of this extraordinary volume illuminate the inner life as a singular encounter between physical and spiritual realms.

Additional Book Information

Series: NYRB Poets
ISBN: 9781681376486
Pages: 192
Publication Date:


Mysterious, introspective, clever, and wistful, A Summer Day in the Company of Ghosts, newly translated into English by Andrea Lingenfelter, captures the profound loneliness and bewilderment of modernity together with its strange, surrealist beauty.
—Lili Nilipour, Asian Review of Books

The poignant clarity of Wang Yin’s images, so memorably rendered by Andrea Lingenfelter, makes his poems burn in your brain long after you close the book.
—Forrest Gander

Wang Yin’s poetry is ever-changing and unpredictable, at once fierce and subtle, and infused with the spirit of the international poetry world in which he participates. He is one of the most outstanding avant-garde poets to emerge in China since 1980.
—Bei Dao

Wang Yin’s poetry is restrained and elegant, detached and yet brimming with feeling. His poetic language combines the classical Chinese merging of poetry and image with the distinctive dramatic qualities of modern Chinese. Reading his poetry immerses one in the delicate and transcendent lyrical atmosphere that he has created.
—Zhai Yongming

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