Poem Read By Exiled Chinese Writer Ma Jian

This is an excerpt from a statement by imprisoned Chinese Nobel Laurette Liu Xiaobo. It was made on 23 December 2009. Liu addressed the following part to his wife Liu Xia.

Liu Xiaobo.jpg

(亲爱的,我坚信你对我的爱将一如既往。这么多年来,在我的无自由的生活中,我们的爱饱含着外在环境所强加的苦涩,但回味起来依然无穷。)我在有形的监狱中服刑,你在无形的心狱中等待,你的爱,就是超越高墙、穿透铁窗的阳光,扶摸我的每寸皮肤,温暖我的每个细胞,让我始终保有内心的平和、坦荡与明亮,让狱中的每分钟都充满意义。而我对你的爱,充满了负疚和歉意,有时沉重得让我脚步蹒跚。我是荒野中的顽石,任由狂风暴雨的抽打,冷得让人不敢触碰。但我的爱是坚硬的、锋利的,可以穿透任何阻碍。即使我被碾成粉
末,我也会用灰烬拥抱你。

The translation is below. The part in brackets has been omitted in the video. Read by exiled Chinese writer Ma Jian.

(My dear, I firmly believe that your love for me will remain as always. For so many years deprived of my freedom, our love is full of the bitterness imposed by the external environment, but it is still memorable.) I am serving my sentence in a visible prison, and you are waiting in an invisible prison for the mind. Your love is the sunlight that transcends the high walls and penetrates the bars. It touches every inch of my skin and warms every cell in my body and thus I maintain inner peace, magnanimity and brightness, making every minute in prison meaningful. And my love for you is full of guilt and regret, and sometimes it weighs on me so much that it makes me stagger. I am a stubborn rock in the wilderness. But my love is hard, sharp, and can penetrate any obstacle. Even if I get crushed in the end, I will embrace you with my ashes.

The last line is especially powerful. “Even if I get crushed in the end, I will embrace you with my ashes.” Liu Xiaobo died in prison on 13 July 2017.


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