Thursday, November 8, 2012

This I know.

Everymomentuponmoment I listen
for my heart to skip a beat 
breaking up, 
reaching its expiration date. 

One day, death will be called Elevation 
like a word created under water achieves a new meaning. 
death cannot be altered
by re-naming.

Though riches and knowledge keep changing, death stays the same.

What we eat, defecate, and consume-
our grandparents never knew as food-
is now reconditioned, labeled and shipped anywhere
where cheap is the new gold standard
and a brand is worth more than the content. 

A young worker in China packages goods
he can't afford to buy; travels days and days by train
without pay
to visit his dying father 
the biggest empire in the East
that shipped tea and spices, porcelain and silk garments to a world frozen in grime 
and ignorance,
so he can tell his father 
how he's
Ipads and jet wings,
heart valves. pain killers and dog food,
better and bigger exports China has ever known.

He hopes his father dies content and doesn't see his frayed coat imported from Somali.


  1. Somali may not be appropriate at all! Where would China import goods that are cheaper?

  2. Rosaria, chills! What a strange world this is! I love this expression of the mixed up economy of it all, and what it comes down to in the end: people/family/friends/love. Without money, we don't survive, and so we keep doing whatever it takes to do it. Some of us will have to compromise more than others, but really, we are all compromising.

    1. We try to live, one day at a time, a moment at a time. I started with someone worrying about dying; I ended with a son returning to his father who was dying, in the middle of his own tragic compromise of possibly losing his job, a job that benefits others more than it benefits him.
      The curious thing, I just wanted to talk about dying!
      My intentions got changed; the poem took wings in another direction. Later the same day, on the news, China was there!

  3. now you have me wondering if china would import cheap goods at all in this manner? (just listening to the news of the shift of power in China's new government.)

    i like how ruth refers to it, the mixed up economy of it all, this including our relationship with both value and death. i always seem to come back to this no matter what the prompt, how to find the most value in living. monetary value denotes nothing real for me.

    how interesting to consider these things in the wake of the last election, rosaria. i watched it all unfold on the edge of my seat.


    1. I began to write this after I read your last entry. We do pop in and out of each other's worlds on tiny tendrils of hope, hope that what we really feel can come out in words somehow.
      I have the sense, in every thing that we write that we are just focusing on one little thing, and somehow a bigger picture develops.

      How to find the most value in living should be our balancing beam, and yet, we don't live our lives that way. We keep compromising, shifting left or right, trying to get a better footing on our security.

      Even at my age, I worry most about the security of my children, their jobs, their homes, affording a college education for their children and future children.

      Politics was never important in my previous life; I was wrong; and mostly naive.

  4. Replies
    1. Eva, one of the reasons I'm dropping sixtyfivewhatnow is because I want to do more serious writing of this sort; stuff that has bubbled up here and there and I just let it sit without further attention. My daughter in law came from Burma, never returned to it; has no intention of ever returning to it.

      I'm interested in how each of us is affected by the same events, for instance. If I write anything at all, it is about these shifting feelings we have.

  5. This is amazing. I hardly know how to respond.

  6. Quite a post. Might as well be truthful, after all.

  7. I like the way you took us through this. I am glad you will focus on more of this type of writing. It's powerful stuff that reaches to the heart.