My heart is like a bright moon, I want to see the ancients

◎Huang Jiwei (writer)

The first time I saw Yang Kui writing was at a dinner party. I am always impressed by people who can write well, and I admire the confidence and sincerity of improvisation. That time, Yang Kui wrote in official script. Later, he inscribed the covers of his small collections of prose, “East Hammer” and “West Hammer”, and changed them to small letters, meticulously. It was not until the “Yangkui Calligraphy Exhibition” in 2016 that he discovered that he has studied scripture and script, and it is self-contained – in his “kai”, he occasionally sees the urgency of “xing”, and his “li” In the middle, there are also many round strengths of “seal”. At the “Paper Edge” book fair, I especially liked his two small scrolls, “Want to see the ancients” and “Heart is like a bright moon”. arts.

Perhaps, for Yang Kui, the text is like a person, but also the text is like a character. Looking through his prose essays, the mellowness of seal script and the calmness of Tang Kai can be seen everywhere. The difference is that in addition to being very ancient, his writing also has a very new side. Reading the recently published Yang Kui anthology, this impression is even more impressive. to be exact. The titles of the three volumes of “Branch with Glory”, “Jing Ji Dong Xuan”, and “Wish Words to Bear People” are from Tao Qian’s poems. This choice of borrowing Mr. Wuliu to express his feelings is full of ancient meaning, but the cover pictures of the three volumes are self-selected. , The use of words in the title of the book is full of novelty: the title of the book is selected from the Kangxi Dictionary Song Dynasty, reserved and quaint, and the cover image is selected from painter Fan Wei’s sketches in color and ink, which are clear and bright. This combination of old and new is natural. , with the old as the new”, this is probably what I’m talking about.

In order to verify the authenticity of a couplet of verses in “Hanliutang Collection”, Yang Kui read through three versions of “Chen Yinke” in 1980 and 1982. He found that the first edition of “Hanliutang Collection” in 1980 “In “Bingshen’s first birthday at the age of sixty-seven, Xiaoying set wine as her longevity, and gave this reward”, the missing number in the two sentences of the belly couplet is neither the editor’s so-called “out-of-character”, nor is it a random fill in “” Completeness”, but the prevarication, faltering or stubbornness of evil spirits. From this, Yang Kui sighed, “Books are created by people, stroke by stroke, but the biggest enemy of books is people themselves.” In the series “Jing Ji Dong Xuan”, a similar Yang Wen is very cold: Meticulous and serious.

And in the series “Wish Yan Huaren”, Yang Wen is cold and warm again, warm and bright. In Yang Kui’s eyes, the so-called friends are like brothers and sisters, both teachers and friends. From the translation of the translator Sheng Ning, he understands letter, express, and elegance; from Kundera’s “Immortal”, he understands roads, highways, and meanings; from the eyes of the barber Zhang Diliu, he feels Destiny, misfortune, rush; from the handwriting on Wang Anyi’s letterhead, he speculates that he is uneasy, determined, and indifferent; from the secret of Xiaolian’s “white boat”, the representative of the language class, he experiences encounter, separation, and surprise… Yang Kui’s writing is cordial and The cold and sternness is written into each other, and they are combined to see justice. It reminds people of the 8 words in Wang Zengqi’s pen who yearn for a warm and mellow realm: “The family sits leisurely and the lights are lovely.”

In the end, it makes people surpass” The prejudice of “cold” and “hot” is the interweaving of the two groups of notes of “North Jiangsu Notes” and “Beijing Normal University Anecdotes” in “Branch Zai Rong” – the childhood memories of North Jiangsu and the youth memories of Normal University. The narrative tone of cold or hot has a leap like holding ice in winter and holding fire in summer. In 2016, Yang Kui returned to his hometown in northern Jiangsu. The old place was still there, and the vicissitudes of life. When he came, he overlooked his hometown from the roof of an old building, “Suddenly the old days reappeared – trees! Those trees! Personnel come and go, buildings are ever-changing, But those old trees have never changed their orientation. With the help of those trees that I used to be so familiar with, I gradually discerned the road from home to school, and then used this road as a reference to identify where my home was back then. Where is the playground, where is the cafeteria…”

In addition to being sharp and affectionate, Yang Kui, who is in the “overlook” dimension, also has a sense of sadness that is not common among her peers. In the anthology, Yang Kui said that beyond the dimensions of time, biology, language, etc., the most inescapable “nostalgia”, that is, Mr. Ho Bingdi’s so-called “concept of origin”, but its influence “is more obscure, deeper, and difficult to detect. In this sense, don’t always think that you are an advanced modern person, the influence of the inextricable old ethics and culture is much greater than we imagined, and it is not so easy to get rid of…” And this kind of establishment is based on The cultural nostalgia based on self-examination and self-consciousness happens to be especially Yang Kui – it is the old and the new, but also the old and the new, just like his increasingly sophisticated calligraphy.

August 5, 2022