An open letter to China:

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Image for post

If you are listening,
you must investigate
the sound of trickling water
in my toilet tank,
an incessant whisper
of waste, gallons gone
to the void of pipes
and miles.

Investigate the nuance
of an ecosystem
balanced between existing
and not existing
on the tip of an iceberg,
meanwhile I watch the birds
flit back and forth
from tree limbs
to fencerow.

Investigate my loneliness,
the tiny pieces of myself
I loose into the world
like flakes from my scalp
scratched obsessively
into their own version
of disorder.

Investigate my health,
how I become
a living and breathing version
of Jon Arbuckle,
holding conversations with pets
who may or may not
understand me.

Investigate this addiction
to smooth glass and light,
the way the brain
is a static cloud,
and every button pressed,
every tenebrous noise
sends a jolt
of dopamine
like a neon sign.

Investigate the dark heart
of the forest,
where the bears roam,
where the rivers
carry secrets down
from the mountains,
where the trees feel soft
to the touch, damp and mossy,
where they’re roping trunks
with red tape,
marking the space
for the next cell phone tower.

Written by

Provocative truth teller, author of 14 poetry collections. Cat dad. Dog dad. Currently working from Portland, Oregon. Learn more at: .

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