Chenou Liu


Exile - Poem by Chenou Liu

A Tanka prose


I left Formosa
for the land of maple leaves -
fingerprints
on my forehead
the same moon

At long last, her letter arrives. It's filled with unbroken longing, passion, and finally concludes with those three beautiful words that are what they were, postmarked 7/7/2012, ten years after I left for Canada.

Between us is a continent, an ocean, and our shared memories that are fading with time. I cannot remember how many nights we gazed at each other under a bright moon. During the first year in Canada, I often woke up in a cold sweat from the dream of her veiled in white and waiting in a dark forest.

single bed
in a moonlit attic
crowded with books …
everything I need
yet nothing I want


Note: Formosa, which means 'beautiful island' in Portuguese, is the former name of Taiwan.

Topic(s) of this poem: immigration, moon, relationship

Form: Tanka


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Poem Submitted: Thursday, June 29, 2017



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