Suspended above fallen trees

Inspired by the poems “Full Moon” by Tu Fu, and “Alone in the Night” by Li Ch’ing Chao, from the collection “100 Poems from the Chinese“.

Suspended above fallen trees

The bull frogs in the bog sound their tubas

Echoing off dead trees like tooth picks in the porridge

The partial moon pours ghostly light from her endless urn

It paints each thing with histories, unremembered

 

The walls of ancient woods hum in the darkness

None have ever, none ever will, catch this moment

Entering my lungs, the air is damp and cold

Exiting my lungs, it carries my heat into the sky

Does that heat ever die, I wonder?

Far far away, in the blankets we purchased last Spring

You lie, likely with cats all around you

Entering your lungs, the air is scented with our life

Exiting your lungs, it carries your heat into the sky

Does that heat ever die, I wonder?

I inhale deeply as a thing moves in the shrubbery

I taste you but like a dream it is quickly gone

 

A night rodent emerges from a log that died before I was born

It looks at me, absurd, in my hammock

Can you see through his eyes, my love?

I remember your kiss and you scurry away and I believe you just thought of me…

Did bitter just slide across your tongue?

 

Away in the wall of ancient woods

Where no wind blows and the tubas echo

Owl hears you in your log and turns its merciless ember-eyes my way

In the furnace of its belly Owl determines your small brown fate

 

I drift to sleep, resenting every second that separate us

 

(c) JJSjr 2017

image labelled for reuse from pixabay

 

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