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Y, Y
by
Changming Yuan


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You love ‘Y’, not because it’s the first letter
In your family name, but because it’s like
A horn, which the water buffalo in your
Native village uses to fight against injustice
Or, because it’s like a twig, where a crow
Can come down to perch, a cicada can sing
Towards the setting sun as loud as it wants to
More important, in Egyptian hieroglyphics
It stands for a real reed, something you can
Bend into a whistle or flute; in pronouncing it
You can get all the answers you need, besides
You can make it into a heart-felt catapult
And shoot at a snakehead or sparrow, as long
As it is within the range of your boyhood.

 


© by Changming Yuan.
Used with the author’s permission

 

Purchase a framed print of this poem.

 

Changming Yuan, 4-time Pushcart nominee and author of Chansons of a Chinaman, grew up in rural China and published several monographs before moving to Canada. With a PhD in English, Yuan currently teaches in Vancouver and has had poetry appearing in nearly 550 literary publications worldwide, including Asia Literary Review, Best Canadian Poetry, BestNewPoemsOnline, Exquisite Corpse, London Magazine, Paris/Atlantic, Poetry Kanto, SAND and Taj Mahal Review.


Post New Comment:
janlynette:
Lovely! I agree with 69Dorcas
Posted 08/13/2012 01:43 PM
69Dorcas:
Interesting poem of culture. Love it. More like such is necessary in poetry.
Posted 08/12/2012 09:24 PM
Linda Muldoon:
Yes!
Posted 08/12/2012 03:35 PM
rcstewart3:
So lovely! I appreciate all the ideas so artfully shared. Perhaps, too, like a vessel to capture life-giving water...Thank you.
Posted 08/12/2012 11:14 AM
marenomitchell:
Seemingly simple, exquisitely complicated.
Posted 08/12/2012 10:36 AM
tiddles:
So observant and so well stated. Causes pause and reflection. Thank you for these words. Marilyn Zelke-Windau
Posted 08/12/2012 09:01 AM
mimi:
love everything about this poem!
Posted 08/12/2012 08:08 AM
jeanie:
wow. surprising, simple and lovely poem.
Posted 08/12/2012 06:28 AM


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