Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "The Presence of China"

This poem came from the January 4, 2011 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired and sponsored by the_vulture.  (marina_bonomi also expressed interest in this one.)  It's about the way an ancient culture builds upon itself in layers, always adapting yet ever remaining itself.


The Presence of China


Clay warriors rest beneath the earth,
eternally vigilant in their long staid ranks.
The Great Wall marches endlessly along the border,
its stone face staring down enemies now gone to dust.

China is here.

The cities twine themselves into knots of asphalt,
their streets combed clean by beggars' fingers.
Neon lights leap from every window,
as nimble as the spell's from a sorcerer's hands.

China is here.

An ancient language turns itself on the tongue,
as sweet and sour as festival chicken.
Words dance across the page, following an artist's brush,
leaving their black tracks on rice paper and eye and mind.

China is here.

The old magic sleeps and dreams and renews itself,
bamboo shooting and seeding beneath a panda's paws.
Imperial dragons wind their way through cyberspace,
swallowing and disgorging pearls of wisdom.

China is here,
has always been,
will always be.

China is here.

Tags: cyberfunded creativity, ethnic studies, fantasy, fishbowl, poem, poetry, reading, writing
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