the things I want

The things I want
Nokyoung Xayasane

There are sunsets
that I want to see,
the morning light
over the Mekong river.

There are sounds
that I want to hear,
the chanting of
Buddhist monks
kneeling and praying.

There are textures
that I would like to feel,
the giving in of flesh,
the weakening of skin.

Yet what I hear
is the rush of the ocean,
the water entering,
calm and serene.

I know I’m drawn
to weakness
and to defect.
It makes me feel stronger,
like someone I’m not.

And I want to write
these words to you
so that you may turn away
from the brink of sorrow
and make your way
back to me.

But I’ve lost the map
and there are no
visible landmarks
as a guide for
you and me.

There is only the light
from the Mekong river,
and the hushed prayers
of Buddhist monks,

the giving in of flesh
and the weakening of skin
when I lie next to you,
and you lie next to me.

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