Looking Beneath the Sentence’s Wing; 1989
What I saw there;the grasses streams trees rivers stones mountains the pale orange crystal pulled from the rock face the wayward clots of white and lavender cloudsluminescent jellyfish the inlet criss-crossed by birdsthe silver sheen of water children marking it with fists and winds unbound by municipal borders sheltering me tender heartedlyneedle-nose pines in a damp field stinging the air covetous old knots on a string still tied to my grandfather’s big toe in Shandongrough and green flowers fallingin a long traditionover his body and my father straining his red-tipped ears towards an American middle groundthe dark sermon of those early years crisis of distance and wild power of my mother— wild new discipline that nonetheless held back feverishly her tongue
Copyright © 2020 by Wendy Xu
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Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission.
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