Paul Hansford

All Chinese To Me - Poem by Paul Hansford

I could say “Ni hao”
for “Good morning, ”
and it was only polite to say “Xie xie”
for “Thank you.”

That was my limit
until, in a babble of unfamiliar sounds,
I heard the word, “Ho-murr, ”
and then again, “Ho-murr.”
Ho-murr? I thought.
Do they have The Simpsons in China?
But it was only “back door.”

Later, struggling to board a bus by the middle door,
I heard the conductor say, “Ho-murr”
– and I could hear the exclamation mark –
“Ho-murr! ”,
I knew this time he wasn’t talking about The Simpsons,
and I had a pretty good idea
he wasn’t a fan of classical Greek poetry either.

But I didn’t want to be left on the pavement
when he closed all the doors and drove off.
So I just squeezed in by the middle door,
as if it was all Chinese to me.

Comments about All Chinese To Me by Paul Hansford

  • (10/25/2009 11:18:00 AM)

    interesting.......! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! (Report) Reply

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  • (9/22/2009 3:18:00 PM)

    sometimes it's easier just to pretend you don't understand.I think on this occasion Homer (Simpson of course) , came in handy. (Report) Reply

  • (6/29/2009 8:49:00 AM)

    nice composition, though its chinese to me too........... can I say HO MURR too... keep it up (Report) Reply

  • (4/14/2009 12:24:00 AM)

    you share your experience most interestingly in good poetic lines...good work, Paul...thanks...10 (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Monday, April 13, 2009

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