Poetry – Summer 2014
A for assimilation
B forgetting the brown
C for Columbus, not Colombo—
that song that every immigration child knows
I wanted to parade a toy soldier,
Impotent and unmanly,
In this country of men and manners.
I asked the police for permission.
They said, sorry,
We only parade puffed up chests.
notice, she said, language body nature prayer
follow the same rules of resting
i fill the washing machine with soap and a week’s worth
of my father’s undershirts
tangled like a clutch of heron’s eggs ready to hatch
only one will live
I buy one and dig my nails
beneath skin. Ride these waves
of scent with me