Persimmon Tree in Shunyi
The air is clear and good today.
There is a gentle breeze in Beijing
Inside the 5th Ring.
My daughter left the doors ajar.
“The temperature is perfect” she told me.
She went out for a run and an old woman
Pointing at her powerful legs exclaimed, “Cold! Very cold!”
Niamh laughed and came home
To let the air into the house.
In the mountains of Northern New Mexico so far away
There was once an old Spanish woman pushing her cows through ponderosa
Who had stopped and warned Niamh’s mother about the cold and the bears.
“This is no place for a young mother!” She exclaimed.
Laura listened to Maggie Velarde's advice and pushed the stroller deeper into the wilderness.
Outside my chamber
Birds gather in a tall tree wedged between the houses
It’s outrageous appearance is hard to ignore.
Today is halloween and nothing screams
Autumn like a persimmon tree. Trick or treat!
Pancaked pumpkins served on arched stems that bob.
Stiff red leaves stubborn to fall
Flap clumsily as if they were fins
On a fat old Koi stuck in summer weeds.
Large blue magpies, the Chinese call “Xi-que” hang sideways,
And search for soft openings in the tough fruit.
From my angle, they are shy cloaked wizards defiant of the laws of physics
On a huge ridiculous mobile of fruit that hovers.
Typically loud and harsh
In this ritual they mutter something to each other very quietly
As their heads disappear into the fruit, to eat.
They are satisfied and have nothing to say.
The last red leaves twist on broken hinges high above.
I would like to leave this earth so decorated
So red and orange
So heavy with fruit ready to eat for “Xi-que.”
Like this Shunyi persimmon tree
Inside the 5th Ring
Where birds cling
Defiant and silent as I sway
Into autumn slumber
An oddity amongst the pines.
November 7th, 2023