Your Fire and Thunder

Dr. Li Wenliang, who was the first to sound the alarm on the outbreak of the pandemic, died in Wuhan a year ago, on February 7, 2020. PANGYRUS honors him with the reprinting of this poem. Author Xiaoly Li says: The day Dr. Li Wenliang died of coronavirus, I could not hold in my tears. He died of the very virus he had sounded an alarm over before it was officially announced. He was disciplined for his warning and had to confess to the so-called mistake. The price for ignorance and political self-service is high. The whole world is paying for it. Let us emerge humbler, wiser and stronger out of this pandemic of the century. 

-for Dr. Li Wenliang 


They muzzled

your warning —


the virus spread.


It killed you, killed

the family of generations,

and killed those delaying weddings,


those collapsed on the street

before time could serve them,


and those crushed by

unrelenting work to save.


Torn cries of the

Lunar New Year


muffled by marching songs


evaporating to floating

clouds that will


come back as rain.




Image: Wuhan, August 2008 by Tauno Tohk  CC. 2.0

Xiaoly Li
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