As the Fireworks Still Rumble

From the uneven dormitory courtyard of an old fireworks factory where I live, scattered paper remnants of the New Years will cluster for some time, vivid red and almost rufous with the dust. A charcoal frost accumulates bits of sand, the odd discarded cigarette and seed shell. The nighttime’s popping, multicolored war zone of a fête takes short rest breaks amid the drifting shadows of discarded revelry and gunpowder in the following days.

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A Mingong Morning

This morning the rusted scaffolding that had been clanging and crunching on the pavement, manipulated by the gloved and calloused hands of migrants workers as they assembled the hulking trellis to scale the side of my building, reached its first pinnacle of construction. With the early hour came the skull splitting, sonorous sound of drilling into brick, that plangent drone of perennial construction that rocks across the middle kingdom, and bores a maelstrom into the temporal lobe of sleeping fools to rock them from their incumbent domains of sleep. Good morning Beijing.