In Tibet, Just be a Stone

Nangsa Söyang

(Translated from the Chinese by Patricia Schiaffini-Vedani)


In Tibet, just be a stone

Painted with the color of sunset clouds

Hide within noise

Arise from silence

Squint with the lazy dog

Watch morning and evening

With the green-haired grandma pilgrim

Be the temple steps

That witness the memories of monks’ robes

Touching warm soles of feet

Making love with sunshine

Joke with death

Be the pavement to crawl upon


(The original Chinese poem was published in the journal, Mingzu Wenxue (民族文学) or EthnicMinorities Literature, volume 6, 2016.)


Nangsa Söyang (Tib. སྣང་ས་བསོད་གཡང།) is a Sinophone Tibetan poet from Yushu, Qinghai. Her poetry has won several awards such as the Third Cai Wenji Literature Award, the Eighth Poetry Exploration-China Red Sorghum Poetry Award, The First Shituo Novel Award for Excellent Works, and the 2015 Outstanding Poetry Award of Gongga Mountain Magazine among others.

Patricia Schiaffini-Vedani (Ph.D. 2002) teaches the Chinese language at Texas State University. She has authored many academic papers and two books, Modern Tibetan Literature and Social Change and Enticement: Stories of Tibet. Her research deals with Sinophone Tibetan literature. She is the founder of the Tibetan Arts and Literature Initiative.