Cooking as an Adoptee

If they called you bougie

Like a pepper with no knee slap

 

If everything we touch, touches us

And the chopsticks were like two shoelaces in your fingers

 

If the way we have forgotten what a carrot should taste like

Is like the way you have forgotten your ancestors

 

If on a city bus, the sour of the marketplace

squatted in the back aisle for five stops

through the high rises rising, through the pressed dressed shirts leaving

and you wished you could love like that

 

If the blade slipped

and out came evidence that the heart

is in constant gift-giving

 

if you questioned its workings when it was cast out

like kimchi from a white boy’s cafeteria

 

If you learned in school to clean dirt from under your nails

as if it wasn’t dirt

that made all grow

 

If the garden you planted isn’t technically legal

 

If mother is origin

And you are a point in motion and every direction is forward

 

Remember the Fall

Harvest’s lesson:

in every tree a handful of persimmons left for the birds

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