Category Archives: Special Topics

Louise Leger: The Tank Man

The students stood at Tiananmen Square
That’s where they went to fight for public gain
The government said they must get out of there
The people stood their ground and so were slain Continue reading

Elizabeth Spencer Spragins: Tiananmen Square (A Clogyrnach)

Youthful zeal fans sparks of unrest
To flames as the jaded protest.
They throng to the square
To challenge the chair
With a stare
To the West.

Unarmed, undeterred, they dare bring
To light fervent hopes for the spring.
The peaceful crusade
Designed to persuade
Draws the blade
Of Beijing. Continue reading


The chill of death came swiftly
To the flowers of youth that morn
But the seed will last forever
From the slaughter, hope is born.
A world watched in horror
As their lifeblood flowed that day
The memories of courage
Will never fade away.
Soldiers, tanks and bullets
Cannot eclipse their roles
They may burn the students’ bodies
But they cannot destroy their souls.

Continue reading

Ernie Lowe: Free flying now

Down, down,
      down poison oak slopes
                down to a wooded canyon,
        down to recollect the whole
   in a ferny grove of redwoods,
          settling at last in a ring of trees
      where once one giant stood.

Continue reading


for the martyrs of Tiananmen Square

The first generals ordered
to clear the square
refused and said,

“The people’s army
should not be used
against the people.”

Oh, the old chain-smokers
had other cards to play,
and it ended the way it seemed
that those things always would,
when men and women dreamed
too soon, too well—
crunch of truncheons, smell of b1ood,
the bucket in the corner of the cell;
Masada and Spartacus,
Boston Massacre, Harper’s Ferry,
Warsaw ghetto,
Hungary, Prague,
Kent State, Soweto.
Some would add Calvary. Continue reading

Lesley Duncan: CHINAMAN (GLASGOW, 1989)

I saw him near George, not Tiananmen, Square,

A Chinese student, taller than the norm,

Open-shirted like a fifties Socialist, Swinging a plastic poke from M and S,

And chewing on his lip. Continue reading

James Fenton: Tiananmen

Is broad and clean
And you can’t tell
Where the dead have been
And you can’t tell
What happened then
And you can’t speak
Of Tianamen.

You must not speak.
You must not think.
You must not dip
Your brush in ink.
You must not say
What happened then,
What happened there.
What happened there
In Tiananmen. Continue reading

Chinese Rights Lawyer Jiang Tianyong Allowed Home Visit, Still ‘Not Free’

Authorities in the central Chinese province of Henan have allowed prominent human rights lawyer Jiang Tianyong to return to his parents’ home, three days after his release at the end of a two-year jail term. Continue reading