Stephen Nashef

Stephen Nashef lives in Beijing

Posts by Stephen Nashef

Let's Drink!

A poem channeling the spirit of Li Bai – by Stephen Nashef


– A translation (loosely speaking) of Li Bai's 将进酒 (Jiāngjìn Jǐu) written with the intention of being read loudly, with slurred consonants, at a room full of people with bellies full of rum. [part of Writers & Rum night]

The Yellow River crashes down from the sky;

watch it heave toward the sea never to return,

and that beautiful face of yours,

which might yet engage a few

beautiful people into beautiful encounters;

watch it wither in front of your eyes

in the flawed glass of some decorated mirror.

Watch your brilliant hair disappear into scalp.

And watch the yellow river crash forever into the sea.

If you've got a heart, by God be happy!

and never let that moon look down upon

an empty glass in your hand.

Bridging the Gap (II)

An original poem for those in a long-distance relationship – by Stephen Nashef


They lived at the antipodes

and could not cross from their extremes

the distance filled with countries, seas

so agreed to meet up in their dreams.


Bridging the Gap (I)

The flirtatious perils of language tutors – a prose poem by Stephen Nashef


“What time would you like to connect tomorrow?”

He said it with a suggestive phrasing (untranslatable to English) as though the matter had already been decided. He knew that, in the language he was using, “to connect” could mean “to meet” – as in “What time shall we meet for class tomorrow?”

However, “to connect” could also mean “to fuck” – as in “What time shall we fuck tomorrow?”