Only by sucking, not by knowing, can the subtle essence be conveyed— sap of the word and the world's flowing that raises the scent of the almond blossoming, and yellows the bulbul in the olive's jade. Only by sucking, not by knowing. The grass and oxalis by the pines growing are luminous in us—petal and blade— as sap of the word and the world's flowing; a flicker rising from embers glowing; light trapped in the tree's sweet braid of what it was sucking. Not by knowing is the amber honey of persimmon drawn in. An anemone piercing the clover persuades me— sap of the word and the world is flowing across separation, through wisdom's bestowing, and in that persuasion choices are made: But only by sucking, not by knowing that sap of the word through the world is flowing.
Shin Yu Pai
for Noko after ruining another season's harvest— over-baked in the kitchen oven then rehydrated in her home sauna Aunt Yuki calls upon her sister, paper sacks stuffed full of orange fruit, twig and stalk still intact knows that my mother sprouts seedlings from cast off avocado stones, revives dead succulents, coaxes blooms out of orchids a woman who has never spent a second of her being on the world wide web, passes her days painting the diversity of marshland, woodland, & shoreline; building her own dehydrator fashioned from my father's work ladders, joined together by discarded swimming pool pole perched high to discourage the neighbor's cats that invade the yard scavenging for koi "Vitamin D" she says, as she harnesses the sun, in the backyard the drying device mutates into painting, slow dripped sugar spilling out of one kaki fruit empty space where my father untethers another persimmon, he swallows whole