john tiong chunghoo

(Jan 21,1960 / NEW YORK)

Graded prisons


Stones piteously imprisoned in their
Dimensions; no sights, no thoughts, no
Tastes, no movements
Plants imprisioned in theirs despite
Refreshing charms, cursed in a world
That affords little movements and no sights
Forever a docile prey for herbivores
Grazing over grasslands, forests, mountains
Animals locked up too despite their huge
Frame and strength; cursed in a limited
Mind that refuses to allow them better
Survival forever destined to be animals
Of burden and the cooking pots
The peripatetic humans imperiled in theirs
Despite their better developed
Intelligence, when they have aimed to be fishes
While drowning in the seas, or a bird while
Trapped in a skyscrapper inferno or a
Naturally immuned monkey while striken with AIDS.

Submitted: Saturday, December 17, 2005

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