Entry Two: Foreigner – 外国人

Guangzhou is the first part I see


A mat of gold [lights] then

Customs [Five AM, Quiet smiles]

Guangzhou airport – magnanimous palace spilling over with

Sunrise [Haze]/Window Walls [Towers] Marble Floors [Glass]

Orchids between the Zen Walkways


The Man Beside Me Opens My Waterbottle

Puts up my tray table

Nods when I Smile and Smile

And Smile and Smile and Smile and Smile and Smile and Smile and Smile

I’m tall and

I have curly hair and

All I can say is xiè xiè (thank you) and    (Smile)


People stop me in the grocery store to say Hello

In English

They take pictures

They encourage their children to like me

(It is a privilege to be different from everyone around me and to be admired for it rather than disdained) (I think of my Grandmother – from China – moving to Kansas and getting sneered at for the shape of her speech)


Steel flamingoes haunt large

Wicker-brooms sweep cement clean

Herds of scooters swarm past red lights

Eyes on me

I’m just happy to be in the night

Without fear the

River is dirty but it is ancient and

Sage green I smell

Crickets in trees, autumn’s moon,


The oceans not far

Shrimp dumplings the

Mountains are lush

They remember I

Need them


Soil is soil no matter how far



For Garbage Trucks


For Sounds

Disco Lights under

That Moon


What emerges around me, I have to blink a few times to comprehend

Most people don’t go so far away from their mothers

Her happy, silky wrinkles

The clean scent of her perfume


When everyone reaches high in buildings metallic like galaxies

I ponder my own two slim legs

Wobbly at the bone

Still at the skin


Wood mattresses surprise me but

My back is straighter

The menu’s all in Chinese but the tastes are



(Steamed Rice at Christmas, Dumplings after School, Sesame Balls after DimSum with Aunties)

(I think of my Grandma in Kansas eating Pizza.)

(The Dumplings my Mom bought in Bulk)


Ningbo, Yongfeng Park at Night
I am living and teaching in Ningbo, in the ZheJiang Province. There really are disco lights projected over all the buildings downtown at night!


This is my one and only active blog now! I just published the last entry for my other blog – which is an angsty-all-over-the-place-but-documented-my-growth-living-in-New York-and-writing-for-two-years kind of a thing. You can check out the final entry (fresh of the press!) here


2 thoughts on “Entry Two: Foreigner – 外国人

  1. Hi there ! I really enjoyed your blog. I can see thru your eyes feel thru your emotions the journey that you are on. It’s beautiful !!! enjoy and remember for ever! ❤️💋 auntie Ling Na.


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