And now let me tell
how all this will come to its end—
God puts the world
in a bottle of fizzy beer.
His mighty thumb corking,
the bottle's snout, He shakes it
Turns it repeatedly upside down
the way bartenders do their trade.
When everything is nearly over
a bum struggles to his feet
And scornfully cries, "I told you all
You did not believe! I told you so!"
Everyone is appalled, scratching
their head in dismay or disbelief.
Touring in Italy
is at times quite erudite.
Holding a road map I asked an old man
the way to the Coliseum.
He scratched his balding head
and smugly smirked.
"You don't know where
you are going?" he retorted.
"Follow your self," he advised.
"Don't follow the roads."
AT THE FORTALEZA DO MONTE, MACAU
Korean, Mandarin, Singaporean and Japanese tourists
scrutinizing a lost empire's remnants' cannons
in every corner pointing at the oblivious city
as if it were the olden days, and thick granite walls
stubbornly defying seasons, fossilizing history.
Everybody here has their own vivid ways
of expressing themselves, showing what man
conceals within, giving it concrete and intelligible
name: Awe. And here, even the cool spring breeze
has its own language that becomes everyone's dialect.
On an old tree stump, in a corner near a reeking
rubbish bin, a Filipina maid sits, quietly reading,
mouthing words from her King James Bible,
etching the words in the wind, making them visible.
Sunday, the holiest of days: no dishes and laundry to wash.
She has reached much farther than everyone here has.
She is amongst the clouds, touring the pearly refuge,
the invisible celestial fort built for her by her conquerors.
Papa Osmubal writes from Macau, Southern China.
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