ESTHER VINCENT 

 

 

ISLAND CITY

 

something is      happening              to my           city

this body              is leaking           rain     it goes on

for days     like the pounding       of angry fists or        

drums of        war     I watched a             video of cars         

trapped by water along      an industrial       street       

and recalled     my dream        driving into the            sea     

it beckoned    a siren singing         invisible and deep     

but I could not        stop I could not       stop    myself 

from sinking    the        taste of rain     yesterday     

made me want           to weep             another video   of green     

trash bins    white         wooden paddle boats       and 

voices      over the recording              howling      shrieking        

at the beach      screams       into the   unknown void         

blown         by a force              impossible to     measure     

with an anemometer       we don't get                 winds 

like these         here in this      city of steel     and nice       

we don't get rain         like these        here on this        island       

how do you   sleep when             your body your         city    is           

drowning   how do you            reclaim          a capsized past


Esther Vincent Xueming is from Singapore. She is co-editor of Little Things (Ethos Books) and currently reads for Frontier Poetry. Her poems are forthcoming or have been published in Ghost City Review, Quarterly Literary Review Singapore, Dissident Voice, Eastlit, Feminine Collective, Into the Void, New Asian Writing, and elsewhere.

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