Sunday, December 14, 2008


Packing for a trip to Thailand to celebrate my wife's 50th birthday, I come across my late brother's swimsuit. I've had it for almost five years and never worn it. I'm not sure if he ever did.

on the edge of the bed
wanting to cry—
happy my wife can sleep through
this unraveling of grief

There's a stack of student essays on my desk. Some examine the causes of the Seven Years' War; others explain Russia's isolation from Western Europe prior to 1700. Right now five years seems a lifetime ago.

my late brother's swimsuit—
fashion history
trunks of elephants
point to a joke

If he were alive, he wouldn't be caught dead in this. I certainly won't be. Nevertheless, I roll it up and put it in my suitcase, planning to wrap it around a coconut and throw it into the sea.
by Bob Lucky
Hangzhou, China

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