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Friday, March 20, 2020

Spring poem ---- koon woon


Bare to Green

Bare is the season
Twig by brittle twig
Updraft and downdraft
Rain followed by sleet

Hot tea in my room
Frigidaire kicks over, hums
Know it is electricity
Borrowed from Susie

T.S. Eliot for measure
Rod McKuen for laughs
In between, ice cream
And e.e. cumming’s “Big Olaf”

So long I am insulated
From the world and insults
I can play this lonely game
Until the twigs bud green


Koon Woon
February 4, 2018





























Friday, March 6, 2020

Franz Kafka Interviews Tao Qian



Franz Kafka (briefly) Interviews Tao Qian

Preamble:
Anywhere there is water
There I dip my line
Life can reside in depths

Truth is a bad deal, my friend,
It ruptures the Bohemian night

Fuzzy Wuzzy was he
But logically he was not he

My line drifts

Note:

Neither Franz Kafka nor Tao Qian knew of each other nor cared about fame. And they lived literally worlds apart in time and space. What follows is a brief fictional interview:

F:  Are you afraid of roaches?

T:  Of the kind that moved about, only the kind that moves in high places. I smoke them out.
      They pass legislations and suddenly illegal becomes legal, etc. They eat a meal, walk then as
      far as half a block, and then eat another meal.

F:  I understand that you are a famous poet in China. Is that correct?

T:  Look at it this way, my friend, if you are a successful traveling salesman of restaurant
      cookware, then I am a poet who has drowned himself many times in wine.

F:  I understand you gave up a government post to become a rustic farmer of chrysanthemums.

T:  Yes, my friend, just as you prefer Prague coffeehouses, I prefer anonymity amongst village
      dung. Confucius said there is beauty in all, except some fail to see it.

F:  Thank you, my friend, I must go see my friend Max now.

T: Good-bye, my friend, when you come this way again, look for the house surrounded by five
     willows.


Epilogue:  Friends can be as eloquent as the long Great Wall of China or as terse as a legal brief.                         
                  You can hear each murmur in a crowded courtroom or the silence of a bamboo leaf.

-          Koon Woon, March 6, 2020

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