Poem by E.J. Koh





                                  Prince Sado, twenty-seven, was starved to death
                                  in a rice chest by his father.


Spring, nearly an ideology, by now.
You, unyielding.
The sky shatters easily like butterflies,
lands on the page as a black smudge.

Give me, something, for the wind to utter.

The East is beyond me.
Sticky ink brewed to bitter—
stamps my lips across an envelope.

Forgive you? I throw these words,
to hear them better, over a cliff.

When light switches on, the world
is a square box, a warm coffin.

I drink the rain through leaky boards.

If you loved me, not as King, you couldn’t nail me in.
Hunger, one letter by letter, elongates, contracts:
Alone! You left me all alone.


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