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Friday, November 20, 2015


A Prose Poem

The tea seller sits in the tea shop and pours us liquid amber in cups tiny as a nestling, a ping-pong ball, the acorns that fall from trees. The taste is of fresh grown grass and dirt, camellia flowers and smoke. She refills our cups over and over; the pot is never empty. We sip and sip until we cannot see straight. We beg her to stop, we cannot stop our hands from bringing tea cup to mouth, our throats from swallowing. She shakes her head, she says “This is tradition. This is your culture.” The tea fills us, it drowns us, we cannot stop drinking.

  • Su-Yee Lin is an artist-in-residence at the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai.