winded

To those who say that poems are just sentences broken up by pauses or rearranged to convert something simple into something pretentious

I say
sometimes
a poem
is a sentence
that has been
worked to
exhaustion
and is
merely
trying
to catch
its
breath.

inflection

I have never
been comfortable
hearing my name
spoken in my
native tongue

something about the way
the consonants are softened
the vowels drawn out
how it becomes
less of a statement
and more of a question
the kind I have
difficulty answering

but when I imagine
your sleep laced voice
whispering my name
in Khmer
I know
my answer
will always be
“yes”

untitled

the words
have been
hidden away
in my head
for so long
never examined
never spoken
my vocabulary
handicapped
bound
by obligation
to family
religion
society

I have run
out of words
to use
out of reasons
to stay silent

my heart knows
it is time
for loosing the binds

space

the flight
is only
half full

with a row
to ourselves
we leave
the middle seat
empty

you are leaning
against the window
and I am leaning
into the aisle

remembering
when we
used to
lean into
each other