Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Time in a Palindromic Lesson

You don’t notice that time has passed
You aren’t having any fun
When that happens
It won’t help to tap on your watch

Measuring sky by sun might work, but
It’s best when you ignore time altogether
Throw away contingencies because
Time will escape you if you don’t

(this poem can be read line by line starting with either the first line working down or the last line working up)

Monday, July 13, 2015

I’ve learned to notice

I’ve learned to notice where water comes from
Down from the sky, caught in cisterns and saved,
then used by the single scoop-full to flush a toilet
or poured by the bowlful to take a bath

I’ve learned to notice how skin is covered
out of protection, not modesty
out of practicality, not frippery
a sign of age, a mark of adulthood

I learned to notice where my foot is pointed,
how not to step over someone
or touch their head
even a yang-sow of the night has an honored head

I’ve learned to notice
every other place in this world
is the center of their universe, too.

-a poem about being a foreigner