“Ah, spring is here!” red-eyed man chokes


Environment Correspondent

When it is time to don a mask and goggles, Sun knows springtime has arrived in the motherland

When it’s time to don a mask and goggles, this old guy knows springtime has arrived in his beloved homeland

BEIJING (China Daily Show) – Standing on the doorstep of his smog-shrouded hutong home, poetry lover Sun Xiaogang managed to remark, “Ah, look – how spring is here!” before collapsing into a spasm of uncontrollable coughing and wonder.

“Spring in the city at last… flowers draw forth tears… oh, my eyes,” croaked 66-year-old Sun, taking in a deep gust of air and asking aloud why the sun – “that golden orb of life” – had vanished “from before mine eyes.”

As children joyfully celebrated the arrival of the year’s first smog by opening their new respirators, a weeping Sun marveled that he had awoken “lighthearted in the morning of spring/ Everywhere around me, the singing of birds… wait… Where are all the birds?”

Yellow tears streaming down wizened cheeks, Sun glanced peacefully at the blood-stained globule of phlegm and soot in his hands, wheezing forth the ever-seasonal question – “How many flowers have fallen in the wind and rain?”

At the time of going to press, a prone Sun was unable to distinguish any of the emergency medics surrounding him but, according to friends, he could now “see the light,” adding, “God, it’s beautiful.”

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