Monday, October 31, 2011

Because I Cannot Sleep In Viet Nam by Michael H. Brownstein

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When the morning sky flowers white petals over Ha Noi,
the dark rind of the mank cou fruit breaks it's skin open
and reveals everything red and beautiful like the way you smell
fresh from sleep, gorgeous and enough, the taste of sugar—
and when the sun spreads it's halo of pollen
and the I bite into the white fruit inside—
the exact color of morning in Ha Noi--I know
why I cannot sleep. An ocean, forests, mountains
between us, your life winding down as the sun sets 
and my life winding up as I watch it rise--
but we cannot watch it together—
you are not here with me, I not with you,
and the tasty fruit of mank cou in my hand alone. 
I need your hand to feel it too, I need you to share 
with me its taste, I need for you to inhale its breath,
I need to love you that much more.
Then I will sleep.

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