to the trio of ladies who spoke a foreign language (20170714)

i apologize to you, ladies
my tongue may as well
been chewed to pieces
or my larynx smashed
for all the good
five decades of conversational
experience did any of us

you asked for help
you had an address
i had gps
and even though i showed you the map
and asked you to follow me
you sought the advice
of another
and did not accompany
to your destination

[albeit a shady one
a temporary looking sweatshop
filled with sewing machines
on long folding tables
–welcome to america, i thought as i passed
by it’s cracked open door alone]

maybe the language wall
was unscalable
or i was too foreign
or you thought i was a white slaver
or some other kind of miscreant
or just bad at conversation

clotho, lachesis, atropos–
i wonder about you still
do you wonder about me
and if you had followed me
would i have had a windowless white van
and chloroform waiting
at the ready

11 thoughts on “to the trio of ladies who spoke a foreign language (20170714)”

    1. It is. On one of my walks at work, I ran into them. They really were looking for a sewing shop and we could barely communicate.

  1. LOL! Not laughing because of your poem… but Ben’s comment above.

    I had to appreciate your poem from a completely different vantage; I spent three years total in the Republic of South Korea (if I say “Korea” too many people ask me, “North or South?” And I’m tempted to ask, “Do I LOOK like Dennis Rodman?!?”) Anyway, well written (all tacky metaphors aside). Believe me, I’m capable of saying otherwise. But be ready when Qbit shows up!

      1. You’re welcome!

        I was an Air Force weather forecaster in indentured servitude to the Army. I was a “Combat Weatherman,” which meant — in theory — that I could tell you it was going to rain… and then kill you. 🙂

  2. Oh wow this is a good one about the judgments we pass over people of other cultures and the scaling of the language wall detail is well done

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