“My Family” by Mary I Huang


She carried three children
across the Pacific Sea.
One slept on her back,
another suckled her breast,
the third holding her hand.

Behind the head of the household,
who walked ahead proudly.
Leading the noble search,
a quest for the American dream--
to be rich, to be happy,

to leave the ache of his broken family.
His ashes were never buried.
Grandpa's ghost adjacent tarrying,
in his work, in his kids,
and every time he slept in.

The woman he loved most
got caught in the over-heating,
for words he failed to express
as he cried his tears with beatings.

How could he say "sorry"
when "I love you" meant everything?
Wrestling with an invisible force,
how could he express support?

Amalgam of dreams, of sorrows,
a weary agitation
he turned from the mirror
to stare into Snow White's fantasies.

As the woman hid stoically
depositing their new ashes
into a safe and quiet bank.
Where wet dreams turn into nightmares
and loneliness knows no escape.

Three children grew in stature,
but would they ever believe
in the fire that created their being?
Or just remember being carried
across the vast blue sea.