Up on the Mountain
The mist shrouded the mountain like a snake that is about to squeeze its prey
At this place, far away from human civilization, I found my nirvana—
fresh air, fresh view, and fresh climb
Trees stretched their fingers towards the azure sky while bees and flies
circled around their trunks, always searching for something,
maybe blossoms that never grew on the branches
I too, am searching for something...
Peace and serenity
Darting around in circles, the swallows performed gymnastics as they rushed upwards, plunged down in neat swoops, and then spiraled into the air
Grey-headed bullfinches sat unperturbedly on flowering bushes and fruit-laden trees
as rain lightly licked their feathers
A bird hopped on its feet and looked at me with curious, black eyes
I stood there, unmoving
A straw-thatched house perched on a grassy slope, its door ajar as if inviting me in From the west, a puff of wind lightly tingled the straw on the roof and dipped its fingers in the sluggish river below
Sheltered by lush plants and friendly animals, I even forgot that this was a tourist site—it was a comfortable home for me
However, my reverie was broken when my mother
and some crazy monkeys stepped in my way
“Smile!” my mother yelled to me as she snapped a picture
of me gaping at the mountain
“Oh mom, you broke the silence!” I complained
“We’re going down the mountain anyway,” she replied
As I descended, I took one last look at the startling Giotto-blue sky
and the swallows that dotted it
But before my we reached the bottom, several monkeys blocked the way
One monkey grabbed my leg and hugged it as if it were a precious piece of banana
Another monkey approached and reached for my floral scarf
I was aware that Mom was probably saving this memory inside her camera
As I detangled out of the monkeys’ reaches, I realized that
I was actually enjoying their presence—
that was until one jumped on my back and tried to rip my hair out
And I also realized that my water bottle in my backpack was gone
As I veered off into the craziness that represents my world,
I stole a moment to just breathe,
took in the magnificent view,
and found peace to take with me
But even with the flowers, trees, and other parts of nature
that I feverishly love so much,
from the safe haven of my backyard to the green spaces of the park,
I felt at peace on this mountain
I rested on the rocky slope overlooking the mountain,
able to gaze out much farther and stand much taller than I typically can
I enjoyed the rough climb upwards because at the apex
I could survey what looked like the whole world
On that mountain, I realized that what captured my heart about the climb is that once I reached my destination, I became part of Nature—
I was in the clouds,
the river flowing below,
the ghostly mist,
the twittering birds,
and the playful monkeys
Drawing ever closer to the
Crematory, my hands
Shook and quaked,
My stomach tightened,
My eyes watered, and
With images of babies
Engulfed in those
Infernal flames, of
Innocence gripped in
The hands of evil.
My mother, beside me,
Was reticent, for once.
Her face was shrunken
Suddenly, there were
Only a few steps
Before I reached
The pit of doom.
Three more steps.
Alas, one more...
I thought of
My little garden.
The passion fruit flowers
Passion fruit flowers
My family torn apart,
And my customs
And beliefs all deprived
My bygone days spent
Playing on the
The giggling and chatting at
And my dream
To become a professional
Were all swept
Inside of me, it was
As if the "merry stream"
Through was frozen
Or parched, never
Slowly, I forced
My mind to shut
Out the noise of
The noise of people
Dying, of the
Fiery pit, of
As if to embrace
Once and for all.
All too soon,
I felt, smelled,
A New Day
Beyond the edge of the trees and silver morning mists,
the ground lay silently, and when in darkness,
bound to come,
the ground sleeps.
The air is soft and cool
beneath blankets and sheets of leaves and branches I could see
a bird's nest with small brown twigs, leaves, branches, and granite rocks.
I saw apple boughs laden with blossoms,
and a breeze sighed silently in the night air.
The moon is full and watching the land
with silvery, ivory light
like a big bright lantern.
When the sun rises,
the light shines all through the forest,
a new day begins.
In a Frame
I feel trapped in a painting, unable to wiggle
even a little.
It happened when I lost my identity two days ago
after never listening to myself and my own desires.
Always bending to others' persuasion
always soaking in everything like a sponge.
Then a stranger entered into my body.
My eyes has no fire, my face is colorless,
my hands remain motionless,
my heart swings to a stop,
and I am always looking
in that direction.
Call me mad if you wish, but life's events ebb in and ebb out,
never affecting me
trapped in that still
and always wearing that expression of boredom
I long to go to the outside world,
where Mother's homemade apricot pies await me.
Where there's the constant struggle of school, work, and relationships.
Where I can be drunk in the perfume of wisterias and lilies.
Where I can actually appreciate art from an outsider's perspective.
Where I can at least make faces and not stare dumbly into space,
for others to interpret my feelings.
Now I am being shipped off to another place...
A laundry room perhaps?
Or a patio?
Or a bathroom?
Or a dentist's office?
Or another garage?
Or worse...a closet?
Either way, I am still
Across From the Tracks
Weaving through the darkness
Of the garden
Bumping against the toolshed
Knot odiously around the
Bare lining of my slippers
A doll by the kitchen sink
By its thread
Choking a vase of sunflowers
As they feel the wall
Walking barefoot through the forest
Pine needles impale the soles of my feet
Stumbling across the field of grass
Where we used to read aloud from mud-stained notebooks
Watching the waves appear as the dancing hem of a white dress
I pour out sand and starfish from my shoes
We let the rain scar our faces
We let the lightning burn our souls
Sitting on the steps overlooking the running track
I use a stone to write to her
Walking in the subway tunnels
I watch the wall's paint peel off like scabs from an old wound
Moth-fed light blinks and closes
At night I lie down in bed
Writing in my notebook
Burning the pages with my tears
Running through the forest
the subway tunnels
Finding the other me
across from the tracks
Back into Nature
I watch a rabbit eat its last meal whole
The vines choke a line of trees to death
I sigh and close my eyes and dream till I am dole
Leaves tickle my feet as they rush into the air
A zephyr gently smooths down the trees’ hairs and braids them one by one
A fire of emerald green, egg yolk yellow, and scarlet red bursts into lovely flames
I gaze dreamily into space, thinking of nothing
Suddenly, a deer steps out into the glade
I snap back into reality and stare at it in awe
It instantly freezes into a marble statue and eyes me warily
The sound of a gunshot pierces the air
Quickly, the deer darts to the other side of the forest
I sigh—I have never stood face to face with a deer for more than two minutes
Feeling ever so rejuvenated, I stretch out my arms and embrace all that is nature
I take in a huge gulp of air and breathe out, listening to the humming of my body
The only predator that I have to fear is time
I have one precious hour that I can step out of my shell
and let burst the poetic and stubborn side of me
The only hour that I cease to be another person
Distantly, I hear the drumming of a woodpecker—keeping time.
Ode to a Big Baby
So why do you cry?
And why do you drool?
You play with a fly.
And sometimes you’re blue.
Why are you shy?
Why talk like a fool?
Sometimes you say “Bye.”
And you say you rule.
Rule what? The sky?
Why do you act cool?
Put down that pie!
And stop crawling onto that stool!
Oh stop blinking your eye!
I won’t give you a tool!
Great, I have to buy
Some diapers and be your mule.
Ugh, I have to try
So you don’t fall into a pool
Or pucker your lip to cry
Yes, I am a fool.
Foolish to treat you as my
Prince. No, I don’t want your rule
The end of your reign draws nigh
So don’t act so cool.
It’s now my turn to say “Bye.”
I won’t miss your drool
And your castle’s waters I won’t ply
Cuz I’m goin’ away from your rule
Light floods into the room
A girl wearing a white dress
She grabs a glass of tomato juice
Her dress bleeds
The stain grows
Until a puddle circles around her feet
She screams for her mother to come
She is dying
Her new dress is ruined
Despite how thoroughly
Her mother cleans her up
It is futile
A stain the size of a hand
Is emblazoned on her dress—permanently
“Nature’s first green is gold”
A gold that scatters about
And hides beneath the brown
Or writhes around trees’ crowns
Mist drapes tentatively around emaciated tree branches
Citadels all around me—
Standing guard, guarding the
Door of Death until that day sweeps in
Fallen logs sleep on the ground
While squirrels seek to disturb their rest
Golden seashells ornament the feet of Neptune
And with each gentle motion, four more kiss his soles
A hidden trail greets my eyes and I
Choose to leave this golden dream
To seek my own reality
The snow drifts down like angels
While people sleep in their cozy beds
Somewhere, a dog barks
Its howl is carried by
The angry wind
And then dies down
When the wind suffocates it
Angels continue to descend from the sky
And form mounds shaped like whipped cream
The black elms tower in the sky
With white frosting on their bare arms
In the distance,
Some cars moan about the stress
Of navigating in this “storm”
It is much more tranquil and beautiful
Than a storm
It is greetings from winter