Under the aura of Saturn

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  • Published 20071102
  • ISBN: 9780733321276
  • Extent: 280 pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm)

ON DECEMBER 31, 1926, from her lodgings on the outskirts of Paris, the exiled Russian poet Marina Tsvetaeva, wrote a final letter to Rainer Maria Rilke, who had died three days earlier. Her letter began like this: ‘Is this year to end with your passing? You yourself are the newest of years. (Beloved, I know you are in this letter before I write it.) I am crying, Rainer, you are streaming from my eyes.’[i]

In late December 2005, holed up in Taipei on my birthday, alone and joyless in my room, my mind was on edge without cause, or perhaps touched by presentiment. The weather was gloomy. At nightfall I walked along the storm-obscured bank of the Tamsui River. The next morning I turned on my computer and opened my email to find a letter from America: ‘Bei Ling, your friend Susan Sontag passed away on December 28th.’

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About the author

Bei Ling

Bei Ling, a poet and essayist, is the founder and editor ofTendency, an exile literary journal founded in late 1993 and published in Chinese....

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