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Midnight's Gate

Bei Dao

Edited by Chris Mattison

Translated by Matthew Fryslie

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Imprint: Anvil Press Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (272 pages)
(Pub. Nov 2007)
£10.95 £9.85
  • Description
  • Author
  • Reviews
  • Bei Dao, described by Michael Hofmann as ‘one of the great poets of our time’, has gained international acclaim for his haunting interior poetic landscapes. Now he brings to the essay the elliptical precision of his poetry, combined with a diarist’s openness and humour.

    These twenty pieces form a poet’s travelogue – since his exile from China in 1989, Bei Dao has lived in seven countries and visited many others. In his tales and descriptions of cities such as Copenhagen, Durham, Johannesburg, New York, Paris and Prague and in his stories of ordinary Chinese immigrants, as well as of literary, artistic and political figures, his thoughts and anecdotes convey a unique charm and insight.

    Bei Dao
    Bei Dao (the pseudonym means ‘north island’) was born in Beijing in 1949. Educated into the beliefs of Communist China, his subsequent disaffection found its voice in poetry, for which he has been nominated for the Nobel Prize on several occasions. Since 1989 he has lived first in Europe, then in ... read more
    Chris Mattison
    ... read more
    Matthew Fryslie
    Matthew Fryslie is an Assistant Professor at Kainan University, Taiwan. ... read more
    Praise for Bei Dao 'The language of Bei Dao's memoir, seamlessly translated by fellow poet Yang, is elegantly simple and guilelessly accessible....Winter white cabbage, vinyl records, pet rabbits, banned books, and first and last 'I love yous'€ provide intimate glimpses that 'open up'€ to reveal extraordinary, immediate testimony of challenges survived in a life intensely lived.'
    Booklist of City Gate, Open Up (US edition, published by New Directions)
       'This is a nuanced account of China in the era of the Cultural Revolution, seen through one young man'€s eyes. Since that young man became a poet, it is also beautifully textured, full of the sounds, sights, and scents of a Beijing that is no more.'
    Publishers Weekly of City Gate, Open Up (US edition, published by New Directions)
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