Jasmine An


Monkey cannot remove his crown.
Guānyīn loves him too much.

She knows what happens
to loud monkeys.

She coronated him with a lock
and sold the key. I own it.

I swallowed it.

Monkey, a thrown
fist and a megaphone, a broken
window and a concrete brick.

I write poems. Guānyīn loves.

Monkey's crown is silence.
Guānyīn is mercy.

I am a quiet girl. Monkey
sits beside me to write.
His fingers fumble
the pen. He tries to be quiet.

I call myself merciful.
Guānyīn smiles at me.

Monkey, a cut tongue.
Me, shoveling cream cheese
wontons down my throat like stones.

                                        I choke.
                                        I gasp loud.
                                                               Guānyīn gives me the heimlich.
                                                               She loves me too much to let me go,

                                                               even though Monkey is my raw throat.
                                                               I cough up the key. Monkey breathes.

                                                                                       Guānyīn loves us and weeps.
                                                                                       I am not a quiet girl.

Jasmine An is a queer, third generation Chinese-American who comes from the Midwest. Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and raised in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, she has also lived in New York City and Chiang Mai, Thailand, studying poetry, urban development, and blacksmithing. Her work can be found in numerous publications such as HEArt Online and forthcoming in Heavy Feather Review and Southern Humanities Review. Her chapbook Naming the No-Name Woman won the Two Sylvias Press Chapbook Prize and is due out in February 2016.

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