“Holiday” by Michelle Sui

A bag full of tangerines, unpeeled.
Round like your face in pictures.

Your hands are not shaking; fruit is always the answer.

One word before the juices splat out
Three before your grin
Five grunts and the dry peels pile up
Ten until the end of tea.

And you and me
You and me

My arms like yours are not long enough
To grab fast enough.
Between the seaweed and the sand you ate,
Sucked it right out of me.

When we drowned we drowned like we were made for the sea.

I’ve spit it out, you’ve swallowed it all!
How silly does that make me.
Your stomach is a bottomless pit;
Your tea semi-sweet.
No pits in this tangerine, thank god!
Thank god the Lord saved me.


Evening news.
You and me.
A bathtub of fatigues.

Someday when I once again pour out my saccharine tea in memory of your Holocaust dream perhaps you will remember a glimpse of a bit of a me.

Or I will lie in your cardboard bed–heavy blankets–and see the outlines of things as they used to, were supposed to be.

More poetry at Used Furniture.


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