garden in the city

she wore a mustard yellow skirt in a grey city,
watercolored the streets a pale yellow as she crisscrossed
gliding from subway to skyscraper to sandwich shop

his bright blue slacks were sky against white washed buildings
which stood heavier than clouds
window panes neither filled with rain nor rainbows

they met at the corner of watsons and holmes
somehow they managed to spill into each other
though the traffic lights weren’t on their coffee break

their colors splattered against the crosswalk
stained each other at the intersection
buds of green grass were planted everywhere that day


half & half – 50% seen, 50% imagined
9.15.17, O., J., Planet Earth, Milky Way

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another ocean

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the ocean is thick with trash
the waves waddle towards the shore
like marshmallows, like winter coats
out of place

even so,
the water is beautiful
under this sunset sky

three birds flap peace to the wind

I hadn’t realized I’d been living so close to the ocean,
the girl from the landlocked state
chases water as a woman

you forget about the ocean
when you’re in the traffic
concrete thrown up into half-baked sidewalks

but here, something within me tells me to
unravel.
pause a little on this concrete shore
remember all the other times you were by an ocean like this

[riding with laughter and a friend on double bikes in Shenzhen
requesting 十年 to be sung on the shores of Taiwan
cousin hangman in the sand
the boy who told you the story of the snail and the rabbit on the extraterrestrial beach
brothers and Barcelona
shrubbery
. . .]

pocket the youth that escapes you
savor it all the while you grow up
on this side of the world

maybe that’s why the ocean reminds me to pause
the waves are always, rolling
back and forth
back and forth
never forgetting to play
always thick in reflection
of everything
under the sun

what of this [precious] life

First, they placed a white L-shaped sticker on the subway map. To hide the prepared changes.

Then, when the new line opened up, they replaced all the signs.

For the first 6 months, the signs pointed to A. Now they point to B. It happened in a blink of an eye.

Like a memory. A glance. A fleeting dream.

One day, I won’t remember what it looked like when it pointed to A. One day, they won’t even know that A existed.

She stood with a hand-held loudspeaker on the train platform, like a broken record repeating,

“Please watch out for the uneven floor surfaces. Please watch out.”

Everyday. For a week.

One day, she was gone.

The loudspeaker remained in her place.

It hung by a rope from its new owner – a cement column near the fence. A man’s voice replaced hers,

“Please watch out for the uneven floor surfaces.”

Please watch out.

I looked at my reflection on the passing train.

My body in the rushing colors and blurring glass windows over the not-so-subtle hum of metal against track.

When the train was gone,

so was I.

 

Jan 2015

symphony of raindrops like

toddlers laughing in puddles,
a plethora of perfect circle giggles.

musical notes bursting into perfectly timed half-fireworks, meeting free-fall’s end for the first time,
song lit up by moving headlights, car horns singing their harmony.

cotton candy gumdrops waking up for the dawn,
a slow float and tumble off the potted plants in the window sill.

morning on a soft day,
a faint greeting with misty kisses and dew-drop hugs.
a quiet “I love you” from the earth that slipped in past the city.

skyscraper birds

[daily]. lights like LEDs animate, surfacing the entire building. pixelated digital drawings of silver and white. swimming girl, flying birds, sitting moon, passing clouds.

on a polluted navy dusk, the digital moon merges with the reality of skyline. you wonder what is real.

[another day]. outside the paperback building, a flock of white birds. flying V-shape, never landing. was it like noah’s ark? instead of water on which they couldn’t land, they were met with steel n smashed up planes of concrete. panes of glass. they were out looking for an olive branch, but no signs of green.

i marveled. paused.            breathed.            a breath.            at the sight of white birds. crinkling. like ancient wax paper cranes. pale and silvery against the clouded sky. you wished for the slightest tinting of peach-pink cherry blossoms, perhaps a beating heart, but they were plain like yogurt. all the better.

why did they fly the same circle over and over again? a shiver. a sliver. a chill. wondering if they weren’t really the soft and airy-boned featherships i was imagining – what if they weren’t birds at all, [rather] mechanical renderings projected. they didn’t need green to survive. or citrus-kissed cherry blossoms for that matter.

but i did. i do.