Inside me, a family

Inside me, a family
by Ching-In Chen

born from small 
waters. Each night,
I look for a paper
to feed this first litter
from a slow continent.

New trappers buy
their fetters and hooks,
dreaming of new skin
to drape. In the sky, a wound 

like river, opening up again
to bird. Neighborhood pushes 
against seams, dislikes 
a newcomer. This linked 
to history and forgetting--
a new gray house like a weed.

A monument rises past the window.
We sit and drink twice-steeped tea.

Ching-In Cheng is the author of Recombinant (Kelsey Street Press,
2017) and The heart's Traffic (Red Hen Press, 2009). A Callaloo,
Kundiman, and Lambda Fellow, Assistant professor in the School of 
Interdisciplinary Arts and Science and MFA in creating and Poetics 
at the University of Washington.  

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