Saturday, October 18, 2008

Poem: Leave with Nothing

Who needs ten shirts when two will do, one on the back,
the other in the wash? Who needs five pairs of jeans?
Who, in his right mind, needs two pairs of underwear?
Too many! Who goes to the laundromat in briefs?

I have lived with little, I will live with less.
These books, accumulated like a secret vice,
seduced even the saint, and so must be reduced
to ten, no, five, no, two, no, no, how about one?

None! So, when a man needs you, he says, to go,
same man who needed you a year ago to stay,
you won’t leave with a rucksack and three shopping bags,
but fill your empty pockets with your empty hands.

You have lived with little, you will live with less.
Welcome, welcome, welcome to your new address.

*

2 comments:

Patricia Markert said...

Gorgeous, Jee Leong. That final couplet is so poignant.

Patty

Jee Leong Koh said...

I'm glad you like it, Patty.