reflexive: city exhibitions IV.

by Emily Tong


black smudged fingertips I am

one of the masses here the

mass of individuals:

the woman who is drowning

in herself (sunk into a white

shirt), pregnant women with their children,

self conscious students, the men

in corners playing chess and cards.

we police ourselves; one

enormous intake of breath

and then that leap into

the scrutinized questioning of

ourselves: home, love,

welcome, a bench, a

house, a common tongue.


Posted on 07/27/2011
Copyright © 2022 Emily Tong

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Samiah Haque on 07/27/11 at 05:07 PM

a rich and luscious poem, quiet and hungry. it creates the most hungry question, and answers it silently. beautifully created.

Posted by Richard Vince on 05/03/14 at 11:20 PM

"we police ourselves" - we do indeed. some of us, at least. sometimes i want to shout or scream as an antidote to the silence, to the oppressive restraint, but i simply won't let myself. i'm so glad this is POTD because otherwise i wouldn't have found it. :)

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