March 5, 1898

March 5, 1898…

The small city of Huaian, Jiangsu Province, China…

118 years ago.

Zhou Enlai was born.

The eldest son of a great family…

His youth was marked by tragedy and hardship.

but he rose to be a leader of the world’s largest nation —

And helped lead China to independence, dignity, prosperity.

He was a respected peacemaker around the world

and his legacy of open-hearted compassion

continues to this day, in every village, town and city

of the nation he loved.

So that is why people around world celebrate

the birth of this great man.

Zhou Enlai.

In Celebration of Zhou Enlai’s 118th Birthday

Your Voice Echoes

bamboo-2Your voice echoes like the bamboo that blows
gently in the valley

Those who are near to you hear it
as if yesterday were today

Watching, withholding nothing
You visit us again
Through the children, the teachers, the merchants…
through your people.

We hear you, but not without a sense of awe
Remembering your struggle, your fortitude
and willingness to lift the weak over your shoulders
To carry the wounded hearts out of the battle pains of the past

bamboo-2Taking much in the task, sometimes pain, sometimes ridicule
but always giving love in exchange

The hands that made your images, the concrete that held your home,
is this not the same that resides within us?
The same longing to carry you with all our might.

To show the future and preserve the past of a life lived with truth and honor

The tears, they flow sometimes
sometimes in joy, sometimes in sorrow
but always with reverence

All we have now is your echo, your voice…
that comes through your images, your people…
like the bamboo that blows gently in the winters valley…

By: David Castellano
Translated by: Xiaofang Zhou
March 5th, 2016