Here in the light of a garden my feet wear the sun’s high-gloss shoeshine. Counterfeit days behind me, I might just walk out on myself for a change, ringed pure and simple with Spring air where ladders of wild red gladioli flowers lean casual on cloud. When night inevitably falls sung in by the bottle cicada’s raw ceremonial, watch me dance in a full moon’s vast lemon ballroom.
I feel the new moon long before I see its light scar; hushed is the healing in live air; hope grows its young skin tender within me. I am animal again, the faint stir; the beginning has its unexpected start in me again; I am borrowed by the lush understatement of a Spring instinct; this raining in the blood lives so vividly on my side now.
I ask kids playing in the gutter what the writing in the sky says. Froggy, they scream, laughing at me and their own outrageous fart sounds. Froggy.com.moon, adds the brashest, correcting the others, and puzzling me with his poem. As I walk into sunset, blinded by glow, I watch the white letters formed by a pinprick plane blur slowly to cloud as if written in water with milk. Down at the intersection, Arab girls wearing veils disco dance as they wait to cross. From the other side of the road, I watch one of them turn and point into the sky: Froggy, I lip-read. Froggy, she says, with a flick of her body that synchs on the dot with the traffic-light’s shift to green. Down by the Greek’s, I relearn at first hand from brilliant geraniums, the difference between red and real pink while the solemn space around houses reminds me that silhouette and the darkness of mountains exert a more powerful pull than any conceivable instance of colour, but best of all, as those letters lose shape in the fading light, is that crescent moon silver with unpaid shine.
Photograph: 澳洲墨爾本唐人街 Chinatown, Melbourne, Australia (2020)
Uprooted to New New York,
the largest of the American moon colonies,
we are tortured by our lost blue planet
in the metaphors of English. We all pine
in a world without trees (the substitutes
they breed here for solace
agonize the sensitive). Lunar crowds gather
in air-conditioned stadiums
to watch reruns of old golf tournaments ―
it’s not the contest they love;
it’s the heart-rending spectacle of lawn-perfect greens
and the frequent glimpse of that gut-wrenching sight: