A Dialogue

There’s too much of yourself in your poems,

says the great master,

too much obsession,

look away from your body , look away and forget

the flesh that tethers you to the earth.

A falcon can only fly higher

when he forgets his own weight.

but, my master,

says the young man who comes to seek wisdom

in poetry,

I have only my eyes to see, my hands to touch

and almost too anxious a heart to feel,

without the feeling of the wind

it is not, for a falcon, flying.

The master nods and smiles,

The wind shall remember the flying.

 

Happily, the young man walks down the mountain

where the road bifurcates into the wilderness.

 

The Scent Of A Lavender

I think you know me when you walk past me

and your eyes meet mine for a second

when I revel in your handsome face.

Something sparkles,

something knowingly coquettish in your eyes.

I think you understand my secret desires

toward a man, oh I think you understand well,

That’s why you slow your steps

so I can catch the sweet perfume of your body

– the scent of a lavender blooming early.

Suddenly you stop and look back to me,

Oh Memory, whatever moment you have to capture,

capture now, before the rushing traffic takes him away.

Ladies Of The Woods

ladies of the woods

Back at my hometown there was a cave where, though a long time ago,

bones of dead women were stored and piled at the first eclipse of the year ,

so they could be resurrected by some unknown forces to become,

as the locals believe, the ladies of the woods.

The first thing these ladies would do was to find their husbands,

if alive, and transform them into tigers.

At night if you heard the racing wind come with roars of some mighty beasts,

It was them, the ladies of the woods and their lovers,

engaging in an orgiastic ritual as the night sky perpetuated their images

into different patterns of stars.

 

My grandma told me this story and she pointed to the cave on the mountain,

“we are all sons and daughters of these ladies”, she said as she wiped her eyes

with the corner of her black dress, the one she wore at my grandpa’s funeral.

“but you can’t find them anymore” .

 

To A Beggar On The Street

beggar

You measure humanity with your bowl,

sometimes a 5 RMB for the hour, sometimes a used cigarette,

sometimes boys spit into your palm,

you return with a smile and rub your hands on your dirty pants.

The world goes on, though crazily, with or without you

because your story is not fresh any more,

a dying wife, a handicapped son, and you almost blind,

my friend, big shots out there need something more sensational,

like the death of a dog ,the beloved pet of a CEO.

But last night, when the police drove you away like a pest,

your heartrending cry brought me back to the teachings of analects

while I stood and watched.

A Date With A Poet

hands.jpg

Take my hand,

when the nocturnal waves surge up the land.

The night bares her sensual bosom to us,

The night, like the vestal virgin, floods

her beckoning look at us.

Let’s go to our destined rendezvous

and leave this messy lust-ridden room.

Just you and I

venture into the fatalistic high.

O the muttering streets do not know us

nor the solitude accompanying us

in this teeming multitude.

But the sound of the approaching tram,

the beeping red lights and stomping feet

all remind us that it’s time,

Yes it’s time to measure the desire

on the contour of every passing face.

and mine as well,

a hot summer night has opened my careless shirt.

But we must go now, when the clock strikes eight,

to the snow mounted Andes at the turn of the first street,

there, the face of a beggar , a shepherd too ,

Imagine his self-same song that comes with each sunset .

Then we embark on the tram down Peru,

where civilizations died and rose anew , warriors,

like the policemen in the booth , scarred in a holy rite.

And on the second avenue runs the wilderness of Siberia ,

come deep to the cypress old, come,

they are sentinels to a desolate dream.

How the world spreads out on these streets,

just for you and I, my dear , just for you and I !

At the end of the journey

I am taking you  to my memories old,

to my unbound imagination and poetic repose,

to joy, to sadness, to light and darkness,

to my soaring ideals that no one can harness.

I have nothing, I gave you the world,

I have laid my heart open in words.

– written in Hongkong in 2016 , revised 2018.