Lawson Fusao Inada

L
Lawson Fusao Inada
Everything
When the river rose that year, we were beside it
and ourselves with fear; not that it would do anything
to us, mind you—our hopes were much too high for that—
but there was always that remote, unacknowledged possibility
that we had thrown one stone too many, by the handful,
and that by some force of nature, as they called it,
it might rain and rain for days, as it had been,
with nothing to hold it and the structure back,
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The Grand Silos of the Sacramento
From a distance, at night, they seem to be

industries—all lit up but not on the map;

or, in this scientific age, they could be

installations for launching rocket ships—

so solid, and with such security, are they. . .

Ah, but up close, by the light of day,

we see, not “pads” but actual paddies—

for these are simply silos in ricefields,
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Healing Gila
for The People The people don't mention it much.
It goes without saying,
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Memory
Memory is an old Mexican woman
sweeping her yard with a broom.
She has grown even smaller now,
residing at that vanishing point
decades after one dies,
but at some times, given
the right conditions—
an ordinary dream, or practically
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My Father and Myself Facing the Sun
We are both strong, dark, bright men,
though perhaps you might not notice,
finding two figures flat against the landscape
like the shadowed backs of mountains.

Which would not be far from wrong,
for though we both have on Western clothes
and he is seated on a yellow spool
of emptied and forgotten telephone cable
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This One, That One
This one appeared to me
in a dream, was forgotten,
only to reveal itself
on the shower wall
this morning.
It must have been the water.

That one was on the full moon
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