Work > Landed

Translation from Poem:

Detained in this wooden house for several tens of days,

It is all because of the Mexican exclusion law which implicates me.

It’s a pity heroes have no way of exercising their prowess.

I can only await the word so that I can snap Zu’s whip.

From now on, I am departing far from this building.

All of my fellow villagers are rejoicing with me.

Don’t say that everything within is Western styled.

Even if it is built of jade, it has turned into a cage.

Author unknown, circa 1921- 40
Carving from immigration station barrack wall. Angel Island National Park, San Francisco Bay, California

Lai, Him Mark, Lim, Genny and Yung, Judy, Island: Poetry and History of Chinese Immigrants on Angel Island, 1910-1940, University of Washington Press, 1991.