After the party, illustred by Ann Sheng

My friends visit, and I feast, storing up
memories, storing up memories for
when they’re gone and I stand by the cupboard
with my hands, with my hands talking over
each other like they do when thoughts rupture

so fast over my head. If forever
were mine, I would be still as a painting
and reach the exquisite end of wonder.
Wonder why. Now my hands are recalling
their American faces. I suppose

we’re the same around the world—but being
understood at last! Mother, I’ll return.
Mother, I’ll return, but first I’m knitting
this unforgettable, missing garment
from the way my friends are no longer here.

My hands knitting in the Sri Lankan sun,
knitting what’s gone, knitting what’s not yet gone.

This poem was published with the illustration by Ann Sheng
in Wisdom Crieth Without, issue 10.


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