Nellie Wong

(1934 / Oakland, California)

Nellie Wong Poems

1. Mama, Come Back 1/20/2003

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Best Poem of Nellie Wong

Mama, Come Back

Mama, come back.
Why did you leave
now that I am learning you?
The landlady next door
how she apologizes
for my rough brown skin
to her tenant from Hong Kong
as if I were her daughter,
as if she were you.

How do I say I miss you
your scolding
your presence
your roast loin of pork
more succulent, more tender
than any hotel chef's?

The fur coat you wanted
making you look like a polar bear
and the mink-trimmed coat
I once surprised you
on Christmas morning.

Mama, how you said 'importment'
for important,
your gold ...

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