bright abyss

when i meet my maker, i think about the
yawning gap between prayer and consciousness,
the straining ache of the eyelids and the
single, shuddering convalescence. at one breath i
dwell at the edge of pink sundown, swept
in a burnished haze, willing a peripheral
blur into focus. i wonder if he is in the
concrete grooves where petals unfurl, or
the swallowed amnesia of tarmac. my
soul clings to dust, shot through like a
gradual dazzle. your word is an entrapment
of foliage: i yearn to exhale fruit. they will
be your testimony and my heritage for the
light is as night and darkness as bright and
they swirl in a luminous shawl. i take these
words and scratch them on my heart.

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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