“Swing” by Suzume Shi

Suzume Shi


Simply by pumping
my thin arms & legs
I could tip the world up
on its lip
like a penny

& rock it

back down
shift the wind so my bangs blew
back. stopped.
washed back
over my eyes.


& my house & the trees
& my father & mother
& the sun in the sky
would jump up
& down

at my whim

as I leaned
back & pointed my toes so
my skirt would
bloom wide
as a daylily’s red


then shut like night
& the neighborhood
boys would
cry out,
“I see France!”

from Rattle #26, Winter 2006


Suzume Shi: “My father was so far away. When he wasn’t working, he took college classes. One was in modern poetry. So, at ten, I began writing poems, hoping to catch his eye. At 54, I am still writing.” (website)

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