Notes on the City of Sprinting Feet

                                                —after Bei Dao

 

           LIFE

Find it in the fire escapes,

the gnawed knuckles, the rye bread.

Find it tiptoeing past the sleeping sunflowers.

 

            LOVE

The night is an orgy of cuts & splintered

toes. Paper planes whiz in every direction.

 

            FREEDOM

Inside the honey jar, the last living lightning bug

lariats the rim of the universe.

 

            BOY

Crack open a fresh apple core,

& find in there a wriggling baby.

This baby will grow into a worm into a boy into a caterpillar.

 

            YOUTH

How is it that winter turns something wild like water

into a limpid ornament that hangs from a rooftop?

 

            ART

Cosmological jazz!-the missing kites all clap inside the trees.

 

            PEOPLE

Look close enough; see how palpable each face really is.

 

            FATE

The piñata tied to an oak

looks to the east, where the sun sets, subliming the sky.

The flutes that hide around it come out to play.

 

            FAITH

An ornamental ostrich egg has sat all its life

in a museum of porcelain.

Tonight's the night the screaming cat music

breaks the glass and sets it free.

 

            PEACE

A dozen children ride their bicycles over a poppy field.

The babysitter kisses the crowns of their heads.

A red ball never stops bouncing against the sky.

 

            MOTHERLAND

Strange how the motherland is motherless.

It cannot suckle its own earth.

 

            LIFE

Find it sifting through crocodile silt waters.

Find it tangled in the drowned lotus root.

Find it spoon-feeding its child death with milk.


 

Close

Places I've Been

The following links are virtual breadcrumbs marking the 27 most recent pages you have visited in Bucknell.edu. If you want to remember a specific page forever click the pin in the top right corner and we will be sure not to replace it. Close this message.