When I weep
a single drop
in my fiery glance a holy eagle,
and when I laugh,
I bring black to its knees,
I turn white into rainbows,
I make joy and sadness brawl.
My harsh tears magically transform
into a holy eagle.
In this way, both tiny and enormous push
against the earth’s momentum.
~ Tseveendorjin Oidov, trans. from Mongolian by Simon Wickhamsmith
Tseveendorjin Oidov is considered the first Mongolian Modernist. He is highly regarded as a visual artist. He lives in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
Simon Wickhamsmith is international director of the Mongolian Academy of Poetry and Culture and co-directs the Orchuulga Foundation, which is dedicated to the translation of Mongolian literature. A 2008 and 2015 grant recipient of the PEN Translation Fund for his translations from the Mongolian, he was also recognized as a Leading Cultural Worker by the government of Mongolia for this translation work. He lives in Rutgers, NJ.