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2 Poems by Zhou Huiwen

The Self-Room
In such a room
The paper, covering everything—
Ceiling, walls, lamp, floor, windows—
Absorbs the hourglass’s sand into a tiny, inked
Language which crawls noisily
Into your lap when you sleep.
In such a room you are
The clock in the corner being safely
Wrapped by lined pages from a diary;
Time, with its weak arms
Will never escape.
In such a room there’s always
The ant trapped
Inside a window pane;
And it’s always that invisible ant’s fault
That you (upset about it watching
from behind the paper)
End up running from the room
And turning brown,
Like a cut banana.
And I watch your lips, see how the
Words bounce out through your teeth and
Make a skip-dip and dodge and
From one place to another—
They’d hopped right through my heart
And left a little peephole which I couldn’t
Stop myself looking through,
As if it were some kind of telescope aimed at
That peephole in yours.
How did that grasshopper get
Loose, wreaking havoc—
It never takes account for its actions
And always jumps too high.
Now who would take a needle and thread
And sew up those little eyelets of mischief
Where little knots of mock-love
Button themselves through?
Who will come fill up my
Grasshopper hole;
And who would your
Seamstress be?
(if not me)
Zhou Huiwen was a commended Foyle Young Poet in 2012. Her poetry has been featured in BODY, YM Poetry, Cadaverine, Inspired By Tagore (Sampad, 2012) amongst other places. She plays the piano and adores all forms of art.