Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Little Men

They behaved just like their names. Mr. Happy
was always happy despite the cloud in the story.
Mr. Tickle learned when not to tickle but tickled
every other time. And when friends righted him,
Mr. Topsy-Turvy turned wrong side up again.

Chinese names, unlike Mr. Worry's, aim
too high. Yang Yang plays for glorious glory.
Swallow Peace, my sister, loses patience.
And mine raises the stakes: Jee Leong
shoots for (don't laugh) universal goodness.

What disappointments Chinese children are! What
a hoot to find out adults are like old cartoons.
There slinks Mrs. Divorce. Here comes Mr. Knife-
in-the-back smiling. And at her father's funeral,
radiant Miss Sun dries her eyes on the flowers.

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