approximate
Jane Lin

as in the words
for the repetition of a bird waking you
just as you begin to concentrate
as in vanish
recall something in the chest
flexed into hardness
every time your mother vexed you
as in water
how it can’t move fast enough
when bodies collide
rises up when your child needs you
having always needed you
from the breast

how yesterday was pancakes
she asked if there was time and you said yes
then there wasn’t and still you made them
because you love her and she asked
as in thirst, your mother gone
as in it could have been song
now you’re late and put out      put
upon      it could have been
song


Jane Lin is a poet and software engineer in Northern New Mexico. She received her MFA from NYU, a fellowship from Kundiman, and scholarships from Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and Taos Summer Writers’ Conference. Poems have recently appeared in Asian American Literary Review, Duende, jmww, and Nimrod. Her first book, Day of Clean Brightness, is forthcoming from 3: A Taos Press.

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