spinning and sharing

Poem about Yong Ding Men

In Poetry on April 26, 2010 at 2:16 pm

Yong Ding Men

When it turns you around
There
Like something infinitely distant,
walk towards it.
Each step takes hearts and minds
Into the past
Sandy peddlers
Wrap and unwrap sandy goods and meals
Sandy problems,
Stir and blow
Each step a little closer
to passing them,
Closer to a gate of Heaven.
Across now a rift road of universe
Black Tar
Yellow Striped
reminds us with a jarr,
of the now
Look both ways, no one’s hand to hold
And back on the path again
To Heaven.
Away from loneliness each footfall rests
In the ground, steady rhythm,
beating heart, step, step
And as the sun cools
We reach cool stone walls to rest.
Sit down, breath deep and see
Dogs run past, on children’s feet
Children speak with confidence
Wearing brightly helmets
Fallen, stars pick themselves up
And commence to racing colorfully
Across the ancient stones.
Wheelchairs pushed
by their ancient riders
Once lame,
Newly liberated, newly blessed,
By something like Heaven.
Loving hands, sandy hands
Guide orange kites
Tailed blue kites and white kites
Steadfast minnows swimming in place
As the grey evening waters
Push the cloud lilies past them
Laughter kind and pure,
Equal under Heaven.
And then from the laughter movement now flows ribbon like
Bold
From the quiet pastel scene and those spry twinkle-eyed elders
Revered and mischievous,
Arise with colored plumes in hand
Fan dancing to the dragon drums
And the thunder cymbals wrought by gods
Each crash of which a crowd grows here
And the carriages of red and gold rumble on the stones
Each father, daughter looking on
With jesters, princes, concubines
And gossiping mother swans
In the Court of Heaven.
A crippled whore,
Vermillion
From lips to toes, limps to her place
Her steps and plumes same same
As all the others
She sways,
Revered as all the others.
The crowd delighted, joyous,
as the dancers step
Bards and soldiers clap their hands
As pauper children dart and dash
Between the wheels of bicycles.
And the old Lao Tou
Wrinkled beyond measure,
His wizened one eye watching
He keeps the beat with a closed fan
Softly tapping the arm
Of his jade throne, the one with wheels
Of stainless steel and rubber
Tap, tap, tap.
The sky dimming now like a closing eye
Keep walking forward, children
Young and old,
To and from Heaven.
Steady, step

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