By Jing Shi (Keith Dede and Susan Su, translators)
THE BALLAD OF THE HUANG RIVER
OLD guy ZHANG PANS FOR GOLD
THE excellent story OF THE GOLDEN PHOENIX EGG
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Extra info for ASIAN HIGHLANDS PERSPECTIVES Volume 20: Ballad of the Huang River and Other Stories
His back is so broad! She should've washed that shirt for him. That irritating smoke. That irritating smell of man's sweat. Where will he spend the night tonight? These travelers never get to sleep on a warm kang all year long. For a moment she felt that the kang she was sleeping on was too big, too empty. Like she was sleeping on a huge threshing ground. Her son was a bit older now and was unwilling to tunnel in under her quilt, and even more unwilling to allow her to hug him. He slept alone on a bed.
Her eyes grew larger as she stared, unbendingly staring at the people destroying her flesh. The onlookers turned their heads away one after the other, and their bodies felt as though they were infested with countless red ants. The women sobbed. Zhenlian, on the other hand, was like a chicken that had been knocked silly with a club. She stood dumbly to one side, her face as white as a starched sheet. "Yeah! Add more kindling and pour on more kerosene! " Pock-marked Auntie, filled with righteous anger, cursed the 'tempering' Mancang.
Hurry and move her inside! " Pock-marked Auntie, flustered, yelled instructions at the young men carrying the bed plank, spurring them into action. The old craftsman was abandoned just as he was about to reach the high point of his lecture. Faced with this chaotic scene, he was full of regret. "Mancang jumped in the river! Mancang jumped in the river! Mancang jumped in the river! " The whole time they struggled to get Granny Li back onto the kang this sound exploded in her ears like thunder. Pock-marked Auntie used her bent-hook fingers to massage her chest.