The Casual Tourist in Tibet Can Find an Approved Orange and a Poem, “She Is A Backward Mountain Who Writes Letters”

She Is A Backward Mountain Who Writes Letters

Even in a backward world
there are camels without humps
worlds missing an L, and she

writes ads for now for trade at
the center of the Mandarin world
pealing the backward bell of corruption
a loose rind peeled from sweet slices to sell
amidst lies, appealing perhaps in a closed world, but

even nah people will imagine tebiT children not tepid
but on fire like the alternate backward child aborted
missing the hump-back of whales, some sort of
chimera, the she-goat of divine-atheist party joke,
will imagine it when trade makes them rich enough to read, or

will imagine other alternate llama missing an
L-spout about doubt, reincarnated hope
in an ad for wine and spirits paid
as if these were as profound as the
spirit of the dead, as if the dead were
dead voice whiskey in
the haunting of the evil party who
will ultimately suffer their ignorance
when conformance to the match is scratched
in the gas of the Gaslighting nah guys
whose exploding girlfriends seem to bet that
one day, one child will climb for mountain prayers
pronounced like the prefix Ti abetting
the setting of the sun and the Tao of the Jinn
who reads open letters when an n is missing, and
doesn’t know who is Hu

— Douglas Gilbert

Nobel Laureates Urge President Hu for Dialogue on Tibet/


3 thoughts on “The Casual Tourist in Tibet Can Find an Approved Orange and a Poem, “She Is A Backward Mountain Who Writes Letters”

  1. This is one of your poems that leave me in an awe-type state…i get wrapped up in the rhythm of the words and way they sound together with the play on words and it becomes like a dance of sorts all the way through and when i get to the end of the poem, all of a sudden i’m like ‘huh? What happened? Where am i? What was this about again? what am i doing? ‘ So then i read and read it over and over until i think i’ve grasped it entirely….but wait – then i read it again and find something i missed each time before. Lots of layers and i’m not sure why but i’ve been super spacey ever since my surgery.

    I think i’m a tad bit confused about everything going on in the world and i don’t completely understand all that’s going on with China and the Dalai Lama. I’m glad that you put that link…i hope that China uses the non violent solution offered by the Dalai Lama. Every time i see a picture of him it makes me smile and feel warm and happy. All in all even though i’m a little lost i know that what i read was brilliant…you always write beautifully.

    1.      Thanks so much. I’m a little confused too. I went with llama Lama and Tibet and Han spelled backwards and the sounds and then got totally lost in vague thoughts. But I’m glad you could go with the flow. I think a “super spacey” aspect can be beautiful. Maybe after decorating the dream, things will come together in the house after all the floating objects come to rest. I always enjoy your comments and like to see how someone experiences a poem. I hope your healing will continue.
           I may have gotten a little carried away with vague associations. I couldn’t resist the puns with the guy’s name, Hu Jintao. Hu is pronounced like “Who” and then I was thinking about Tao as a word and then I thought about Jinn which is another word for the magic Genie, but he only has one n. But then none of it is exactly related. So it drifts around.

      1. You’re welcome, I like the way it drifts around and the puns with Hu’s name are great. I hope things will come together soon and i’m glad you think a super spacey aspect can be beautiful. I worry that my spaciness makes me come off as weird or maybe even dumb or something like that. I forget little things or overlook some things as i go on and on about something else, there’s random thoughts floating about not connected to anything. geez. i probably come off as a mess to others.
        I think i’m pretty close to being healed, i still have a little scab but i’m not hurting so i don’t have to take the high strength ibuprofen anymore. I’m still off work next week but have to start back the following week.
        Wow! I accidentally just clicked on a poem to the right and was like NO! I lost my whole comment…i hit back on the browser and all my text was still here…whew! That was close. It takes this space-cadet forever to leave a reply these days, (giggling).

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