Poetry Corner – China Poem Part 2

China Poem
***Background: I wrote this on a lonely mountaintop in the middle of nowhere, China, after taking my first job teaching overseas... It was a tough year, but we (the Lingxi Crew) made it through, and I ended up spending six years teaching in Asia! My girlfriend, upon reading it years later, described it as "very emo."


China Poem - Part 2

Eating rice and noodles a lot

Streets lined with stroodles and oodles of shops

Teaching classes, reaching masses

of children still in teeny baskets

People sleeping, amputees begging

Young girls squealing, old bags haggling

Age is keeping, time is lagging

but never runs out so we keep on dragging

While we’re treated like celebrities

a person’s life here is never free

Sidewalks, streets are used as bathrooms

Pollution looms, witches brooms, no vacuums

Umbrellas, umbrellas – everywhere!

Shield from rain and protect from glare

On a sunless morning The Sun is scorching

Try to feel inspired but fun is boring

Feel like I might evaporate, I’m exasperated!

Need a nap or break, hot like a pasta plate

Hot and muggy, feel sluggish

Draught is coming, revealing rubbish

Old folk exercise, keeping healthy

Many are poor, but hide the wealthy

Girls get married, still so tender

Having babies, frill and slender

Starting families so young

When's the time come just to have fun?

Motorbikes racing traveling fast

“Out of the way!” Better make a dash

Horns honking, breaks screeching

Salesmen preaching, constant beseeching

My ears are bleeding!

....

Gloomy day, cloudy weather

A ray of hope holding on by tether

There's always next day to feel better

So for today, I’ll just endeavour


-Lingxi, China, 2010

Poetry Corner – China Poem

China Poem
***Background: I wrote this on a lonely mountaintop in the middle of nowhere, China, after taking my first job teaching overseas... It was a tough year, but we (the Lingxi Crew) made it through, and I ended up spending six years teaching in Asia! My girlfriend, upon reading it years later, described it as "very emo."


China Poem

Everything is old and new

But new is old, and old is new

Rickshaws, BMWs, Shaolin temples

Strict laws, streets in rubble, flower pedals

Car horns, “corn for sale!” 

kids crying, birds chirping

The sound of construction men 

constantly working

Muslim noodles served in huge bowls

Rice and chopsticks, spice and hot spits

Milk tea, milk drink, egg milk, hot milk

Silk scarves, silk sheets, rag silk, not silk

Polluted river, chicken liver

Cold shiver, hot quiver

Rain, rain, rain, rain

Again, again, again, again

Sun! Humid, hot, wet, damp, dirty, sweat, AC! 

WC no seat; both feet

Good people, look feeble

Paint a portrait on wood easel

Fun times, vent rhymes

Lifetimes into bent spines

Sun climbs, then shines

Rays upon spent minds

China: Sign up!

One year, I’m stuck

But with my luck

Won't last five months


-Lingxi, China, 2010