Ho fermo il core in petto.
Non ho timor: verrò!
(my heart beats firmly ,
I’m not afraid:I’ll come – Don Giovanni)
breathe in, breathe in ,
the dust, the smog, the sordid proof of being,
a dose of excitant in the air ,
a whiff of depressant that fumbles my hair ,
Is that how I am ? Is that how I smell?
Is that how I should proceed with my preparation
and advance to my beau de faire?
I see my black suit in its funereal solemnity
I see my bow tie batwinged to a silent mockery,
I do not think the old time remembers me ,
no, nobody sings ever more ,
as spring does not bring back the fall.
I, a sojourner in a strange town,
I, bound with forces that frosted my hair,
see the sun arise from my coffee mug
— each day!
but again, who would ever care ?
my sad reflection approaches in the mirror,
my sad determination voices the horror
the negation or sublimation,
from the man I should meet in one hour ?
I know these eyes too well.
yes I grow older now , each year ,
I speak wearing my heart sincere
on my frivolous lips;
I’ve seen life seeping away through my finger tips,
come ye my soothsayer ,
come and tell me
that the line of life continues somewhere.
It’s time to look at my watch and count
one two three, yes one two three,
should I reach out to the nonchalant door
and open to the falling agony ?
I could have bought a bunch of roses,
I could have talked to the petty peddler
I could have said with a friendly grin
certainly It will be a great year to come ,
to you , to me , to all who wander alone.
because I do not feel cold at all,
I feel the universe spiraling up above
with bits of decay and bits of reanimation
ready at last for the final transformation ?
In all, I am beside myself .
until I breathe myself out and away like
a diminished sound for an emaciated figure ,
will he notice ?will he take heed ?
will he be disturbed by the sweat down my hair ?
Ah, the clock urges me on urges me on ,
time to face my saviour in the throng.
-written 2016 revised 2018, to be published on the seventh issue of Shanghai Poetry Zine October 2018.