Lillian Fu | Art by Grace Lu
Sometimes, I will take a breath of clean air
and be reminded of open plains
and fair-haired earth, a sky Demeter painted
while thinking about a nest of robin eggs,
how I waded through tall grass swaying
and walked to the horizon.
Sometimes, I will stare out the kitchen window
and remember curtains of viridian willow boughs
hiding crumbling stone steps, steeping
with thousand-year roots in Guanyin’s tea kettle,
how I climbed that stair to the willow’s trunk
and faced the phoenix’s soft sun.
Once, I woke on top of a mountain capped with snow,
and all before me was light, an overexposed
photo of the world above the clouds,
captured through eyes stinging with cold wind.
I raised my arms up like a pirate ship’s figurehead
and became my own stolen breath.
Once, I met a girl with lips folded from peach blossoms,
and she smiled in a way that squeezed cherries
against the bulbs of her cheeks, heat in mine,
her dark eyes two sea-smoothed stones.
I let her take me by the hand and lead me to the bay,
where she laughs, kisses me, and evaporates.
Always, I sink into waking as slowly as I can,
and cherish the lingering moments
that find home in the pockets of my soul.