Torn

I am the essence of a tear,
I am torn.
I am the deep bow of Anyonghasaeyo, I am
the salivating of orange Cheeto fingers, I am
the push and pull of Tug of War,
the sticky stretch of rice cakes or duk,
the nighttime tales of Thumbelina,
I am the essence of a tear, I am

the rhythm of the steady recitation of the times table, I am
the heap of brochures from the Louvre and Orsay, I am
the expanse of Dragon’s Beard, the brushing
and brushing of a new doll’s shiny flaxen hair, I am

the essence of a tear,
I am the Shuffle, and then Repeat, Repeat, Repeat,
the Hide, but never Seek, I am
the crammed spaces of a practice log, I am
the poke in the eye with the stick of a clogged mascara wand, I am
the fumbling of chopsticks and the sour stench of kimchi, I am
the gagging of eggnog and chicken pot pie,
I am the essence of a tear, I am

the ‘Ganbei!’ and ‘Cheers!’,
the ginseng tonic and Vitamin D,
I am Chusuk and Christmas,
blue Levi’s and a silk hanbok wrapped,
Close and tight. I am
the reenactment of Barbie and Ken’s nuptials, and the
Careful placements of porcelain figures. I am
the quiet hands tucked near with a sharp word for a slight fidget,
and the freedom of skips. I am
The essence of a tear, I am torn.