Jul/Aug 2005 Poetry Special Feature

Snapshots of My Brother in Asian Countries

by Julie King

Snapshots of My Brother in Asian Countries

This is my brother. He's in front of the Temple
of the Dawn in Bangkok. His shorts are too short,
and the scuttling ladies smoosh their lips at him. He doesn't
realize he is uncouth. He realizes he wants a wife.

My brother is eating shrimp at The Darling Café
over on Hang Quat. He doesn't know that chopsticks traveled
to Vietnam via China during the Occupation. He only knows
they feel good in his hands and that he wants a wife.

This is my brother not caring that the Phillipines is the only
Christian country in Asia. Or that Abu Sayyaf, a Muslim
extremist group, has been targeting foreigners. He is losing
his hair. He hopes to breed out the mutant gene with a wife.

This is my brother floating on the Mekong River. His arm
is around Ket. He has just asked her to marry him. She is
whispering to him yes, yes, polar bear in your head. Oh,
that's just what he wanted to hear. He has no idea what she said.


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