Notes to Angela

Screen Shot 04-03-15 at 12.57 AM

Notes to Angela

I wanted to read Red, the color
Of you, to know the labor
That spelled your destiny

The red was something
None of them could contain
It was the heart of you

And I could not steal it
I could barely grasp at it
The symbols, the bizarre
Frames of reference

Glittering in the dark like candy
Post-modern candy of the why
The where and the who all

Tied up in bouquets of koans
E.J Koh, I don’t get you, like
At all, Love, do you still remember
The inner peace, remember how

You ached to be your own witness
Loving the moment in what you do?
With only reasons that
Could be right for you

Knowing that it all came
From impermance and would return
To the source, was it Red,
Or easy to read, or approachable

What being a colony fellow
Does to you, I do not know.

Author’s Note:

Like the Writing on your Hand

Screen Shot 04-03-15 at 12.45 AM

Like the Writing on your Hand

Do you think it’s plausible
Just wait a second, for a moment
That we take pieces of each other

Forever influenced, eternally merged?
If I swallow your poetry
Does it thirst and settle
And make rapture

In my voice, as if forever?
Do I carry a part of you
Your narrative, meme, genes?

I think my inner Korean voice
Can attest to it, scandalously odd?
While no one is watching
There’s no one to hear

The echo of me dying
To the new one I am now
After knowing of your existence

That thingess of absence
It goes and sucks like space
But space-time is permeable
To gorgeous quotations

And that is why
I have reincarnated a piece of you
With me forever

Do you think it’s plausible?
Take a guess, run away, write
It on your hand.

The Poetic Journey

Screen Shot 04-02-15 at 04.31 PM


The Poetic Journey

There is a fasciation in doing
What we do, it might have been
The most genuine obsession I came upon
An altruism of a neurochemical

Some self-reward mechanism akin to
Meditation, the journey of words
It’s a customer journey of art
Of taking a craft and doing it

For an hour, a year, a lifetime
Musicians practice ten hours a day
But I’m compelled to listen
To the silence and for collisions

To collude with voices, ghosts, poets
To love what you do in gender, exhibition
Without rewards, not for profit
Sharing it freely with a world

Anonymous, not regretting
Borrowing and borrowed
Never really bored, only sitting alone
For hours pouring, peering, patiently

Waiting for the ideas of the soul
That I might do what you do
And become a bit of what you are
The sacred in the mundane

And a mystic in the invisible
Sifting language for a golden moment.

Letters to AEJ


AEJ Koh 2

“Do you think we’ll find love?”
She said to him, mirroring
Her utter need to give love
Then she loved him as she would
A manifestation of herself and him

Both silenced and weary
Of existence, both wounded
How people get when they have lived
And lost, both everything
And mothering, for eternity

And the years left that they had
And it wasn’t so much a matter of waiting
Or hoping, but learning how to receive
Giving was easy, as easy as writing
The symbols that poured over us

When we most wanted to connect
With the universe, as we knew how
Writing, being the centre of our gravity
Gravity being the physics of our need
“Yes I think we’ve found love”

He said to her, mirroring
Knowing the reassurance she craved
His utter need to know someone
Who loved what he loved as much as he did.

Screen Shot 04-02-15 at 04.31 PM

Screen Shot 04-03-15 at 12.22 AM

AEJ Koh 1


AEJ Koh 1

I heard you were a word mother
I read your lines, pretty beyond
The beautiful world I know
If the present is the revenge of the past

I think karma loves you
As I turn inside-out every word
The internet says belongs to
Your strange initials, I feel as if

If I were to trace you
In symbols, I might divine
A bit of your experience
I’m so easily haunted by your

Privilege, your coffee-nails of grit
Just when you think nobody notices
I cannot imagine a gamification of poems
The way you do, carried up levels?

That’s insanely sweet, and quite orderly
Compared to the way I scribble
Six past midnight, miles from you
Do you think we are maybe

A little bit autistic to love something so much?
A blister on the face of art?
A poem lost in a dialect of ancestors?
I have no friends with prospects of a real career

Does that make me an eccentric
When I put my hand out to the world
I’m not begging, I’m just checking
For a pulse, I won’t forget how unforgettable

You are, I’ve stumbled upon you
A few times, like a magnetic map
Back to our favourite lines
I can find profundity

And even the most oblique of conversations
How can I be seduced by mere words?

Ode to other writers


Ode to other writers

You made me appreciate
The use of a turn in a poem
And I sought to write a poem
About you, without success

I could not encompass
Your own myth in my myth

Or embrace you as a person
Whom I could not know

For I always wanted to encourage
People like you, but I knew
You existed, on the fringes
Of publishing and quite cafes

Where poets go to hear each other
Talk about poetry, no
The female protagonists of the new poetry
Where I cannot go or care not to

Since I do not live in San Francisco
New York or Seattle, no
You see, we are such a select bunch of
Writers, that can only say we

Do what we love, sometimes in the closet
Sometimes like you, with an
MFA that you can say gives you
The right to talk about other writers

With a bit more dignity
Whereas I only read them to write
I knew for sure I’d never sit down
To attempt a novel, I’d rather to imagine

I knew you, than actually
Have the chance of knowing you
And somehow get lost on the way.




There is always too little
Of us to go around, that sharing
I would want to be as mutual
But, I like them more than they can comprehend

Never mind reciprocate, it’s a shame
To be a people loving introvert

Never able to fully express

What you feel inside like
Like a family that went
Horribly wrong carrying the trauma

Without knowing the story
Each time I fall in love, I think
It’s a bit for myself, like sleep lost
In a troubled childhood, that I

No longer remember, or
The fragrance of things that you wish
You could retrieve, like the Sea

Or the forest when you lived in
Tropical countries, where fruits

Felt entirely different in your mouth
And now you labour, a slave more or less

To circumstance and the choices that made you
Choose fate over your own free-will
That you were not aware, were choices at the time.

Titled Below


To an Author

I heard that you wrote
About your life again
On paper napkins of your heart
My life is blushing again

Painted as it is with glowing stars
I Cannot sleep for all this
Visiting estranged years pains me
I don’t want to look back, to the past

I want to look forwards, to youth
That is always young and work
That always needs to get done

That is my present, so when

You talk about yourself so intimately
I cringe at the prospect
I would prefer to work
Music and philosophy into my words

I didn’t want to know you by your writing
There’s no golden age of bohemianism
There’s just you and your pen
And a cat, who I imagine watches you.

These long roads


These long roads

Ancestors, where did
You lead me? Did you know
That little by little
I would be the one to
Forget sacrifice? To falter

Because I was the one
To be too poor to procreate?
How can it be, that so many
Roads could be erased

My cousins have children
They do so without much thought
Without knowing, Fathers
Grandfathers, I can not
I hold onto everything

I thought that I possessed but
There are no foundations here
No courteous stability, I must
Learn to do without, descendants
They are in the distance

They are not descended from I.

The wind that tied your mood


The wind that tied your mood

We’ve finally spoken
Said our part
From the rooftops of our lives

Cheering for the fate
Of hallways open, blue skies
The human prime is fragile
Because it’s so damn short

Open the windows
Tell them you’re not sad anymore
That for once your soul

Is excited, that you are thriving
That the cynical part of you
Died faster than you grew
For reality, is a cautious optimist
Because, that’s the only way to live.

Lullaby of futurities


Lullaby of futurities

I found reluctant peace
In the entirely beautiful
Memory of the future
It was as if I had been there
My sleeping head thus cried out

Mortal, guilty, embarrassed
To be alive, yet entirely
Giving, like a fever
I was swept with a faith
So radical, so abstract

So universal, I was lost
In the hermit’s ectacy
Of mystic super-sympathy
“the future”, my soul called out
With relief a certain fidelity

This too shall change, how lovely
It was to know that she
Would arrive, as sure as
A growing child’s full
Dawn of intelligence

The spirit in bloom
And the soul’s whispers
The inner beauty like a lullaby
Of whatever must be
To arrive at her wildly entertaining

Vistas of nature’s genius
She, the lovely future
Watched by every human love
With such involuntary glory.

Titled Below


Like words never wholly kissed

We played our words for keeps
Aware fully of how ephemeral
They make vowels these days

Sheep, that flood the ether
The best gestures o f
The brain went unread

And the most talented beauty
Were paragraphs unpublished
I think there is no parenthesis, love

Alphabets are ruined by the internet
Poetry lives on trapped
In the syntax of the human heart

Who will never wholly kiss you
Or find the meaning behind
The trapped sentences of our lives

And these thoughts that do repeat
We played our words for keeps
Bitter for not having more

Beauty to offer, and to share
Love made our eyelids all aflutter
But innocence died

While the spring of the world
Invented a more holistic verb

To express not what was lost

But what was gained by
The new verge, enchanted vocabulary.

Like a prayer

Like a prayer

It’s an unfortunate coincidence
That we end up with nothing
The moment we die

Only a last thought

A waking memory
On the border of this and that
Neither here or there

Shivering, anxious
In a cold sweat at the start
Of the greatest of endings

And there, in a note
Of the purest surrender
We find ourselves buried

Time flying into the future
Where we possess our
Spiritual necessity

It’s our naked privilege
Then, to be ourselves
Knowing, we are on
Our way to becoming
More ourselves every day

Every lifetime, it’s inevitable
And like, an aglorithm
Of soul training itself
On the Big Data of
A thousand lifetimes.

For National Poetry Month – More



It’s safe to say that
We are dead
Safe and dead in the cold night

Warm for the rest of our lives
In bodies of spirit
In minds of calm

Here dead lie we for
Free-will attempts the impossible!
To live and feel shame
Is a natural thing, to not
Have perhaps achieved our dreams?

Did we not choose to love
The little that we could indeed?
But young men think the world is theirs
And young women have something
Up their sleeve, and I hope

I hope they are right
For a time, until it is not their time
It’s safe to say that

We will all die
If only for a holy nothing to lose
There is nothing to lose

So risk your heart out
Until you have no courage
Until you’re all numb
It takes courage to push
Yourself to new places

And there are always new places
To break through barriers for
It’s safe to say we all

Pushed for some kind of future
Something always out of reach
Poetry on the tip of our tongue.

Water Star


Water Star

I fit into you
Like laughter to the point of tears
Like a sun bleached to perfection

That is how I will remember
Our life together
Sun bleached winters
Full of transparency

Waiting for spring
Trying to learn Mandarin
You trying to learn English
I fit into you

Like dreams hot with
New changes, redemption, second chances
And I’m full of gratitude

For the small wonders dear
For the quiet sense of belonging
I never truly had before.

The philosophy of loving


The philosophy of loving

I’ve loved the world
As much as I very could
And often purely in mood

Imagined if she thought of me
Our relationship consists
Of discussing if we existed

And I adored thinking this way
For I knew mortality was short
A pause in a breath
A light in the dark
A musing of the possible

During which time the potential
Faded, mutated, alternated
I love this world

And hope to find affinity
In her tragedies and embracing error
Find strength in failure

And joy somehow in sorrow
And unity on the frigid cheeks of loneliness.

Great poems to not memorize


Great poems to not memorize

I’ve never memorized poems
I’ve only attempted to look
At the world with poetry

For beauty is everywhere
We just have to notice
And truth is everywhere
We only have to recognize her
I’ve never tried to be a poet

Poetry has worked
Through me like music
Like a brain on music

And a symphony on pause
A hush, a glow, maybe a tap
I look up to the light
At that moment, I’m a living
Prayer of poetry, sincerely

Surreal and in awe of how
Beautiful life can be
The inner journey that is ours.

Her eyes can spell


Her eyes can spell

Her eyes spell the soft white fluff
Between sentences, the surmise
Of silence, the soft empathy
That floats like a whisper towards you

She does not exist for you
She incarnates in women and will
Do so for all eternity
They who watch shooting stars and aurora borealis

Who wake up at dawn to serve
A family whose mission isn’t sure
I could just watch them eternally
These eyes of yours, your eyes

That spell and spy and watch
With a regard to pure, attuned
To the simple things, the natural
Body language of serenity

We’d be lost without regards like yours
And I cannot even say we’d have each other
Her eyes are like a foreign language
They rest on me for a moment of wonder

My wonder to be seen by eyes like this
And it stays with me for the entire day
To be spied by a watcher such as those
A pair of nectar-soul eyes you know
That can paint peace with just a look.