by Lu Yang (year)
translated from the Chinese by Eric Abrahamsen, with assistance from the Nanjing Youth Literary Talent Project
from the June 4 & 11, 2018 issue of The New Yorker
The 2018 Fiction Issue of The New Yorker is out, featuring stories by Lu Yang, Karen Russell (see here), and David Gilbert (see here).
I do not know the work of Lu Yang, so his interview with Deborah Treisman is particularly helpful. He was on the forefront of the Chinese avant-garde writers in the 1990s, after which he practically stopped publishing. He says he’s writing again, perhaps as a result of translating Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea recently.
“Silver Tiger” takes us back to his earlier period, though, as it was originally written in 1992. Here’s how it begins:
I lived with my deaf granny from a very young age and was sent to be with my mother and my father only on feast days and for memorials. Behind Granny’s house was a deep well pond, and it was in that well pond that I first saw the silver tiger. Much of what I’m going to tell you is inextricably bound up with that silver tiger. In physical form, the silver tiger’s paws flexed and sprang as it stepped nimbly through the thickets of my childhood memory, an awe-inspiring presence.
I hope you all enjoy the story and this entire issue. Please feel welcome to join in the conversation below!