Yuan Changming | THE TUNER: A 50-WORD TRILOGY

(for Helena Qi Hong)

In the mid-teens
You gave me a tuner
In Mayuhe, which I’ve

Treasured as a love-token
For five decades (when
We remained totally
Lost to each other
On Earth’s opposite sides)
Until now, after a horizontal

Refreshment, you clarify
You’d just meant to help
Set the tune for my erhu


Author’s note: This minimalist poem is inspired by and thus devoted to Qi Hong (祁红)” or a subtitle “(for Qi Hong 祁红),” whichever is, hopefully, acceptable to you—thanks to this devotee, I’ve written and published over a hundred love poems and a dozen short stories besides a full-length trilogy (to be published) since mid-2021.

Yuan Changming began to learn the English alphabet in Shanghai at age 19. With a Canadian PhD in English, Yuan edits Poetry Pacific with Allen Yuan in Vancouver. Credits include 12 Pushcart nominations, 15 collections & appearances in Best of the Best Canadian Poetry (2008-7), BestNewPoemsOnline & Poetry Daily, among 2009 others, across 49 countries. Yuan was a poetry judge for Canada’s 2021 National Magazine Awards. Early in 2022, Yuan began writing and publishing fiction.