at dusk the tremors begin,
too stubborn to yield to that pained
ekphrasis: jagged headpiece, mottled
palms, limp torso, crimson stain.
perfection is unbroken bones; they
roll the stone from the mind. light
crackles in an empty cavern. no tears
will surge this descending jerusalem,
only the lungs, the limbs he comes
to fill, the bough that learns to bend,
the breath, spilled upon the altar, and
the body, roused to dance, over and
over again.

Jonathan B. Chan is a student at the University of Cambridge. Born in New York to a Malaysian father and South Korean mother, he was raised in Singapore. He is preoccupied with questions relating to faith, prayer, and identity. He has recently been moved by the writing of Frank O’Hara, Li-Young Lee, and Charles Olson.

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