Dear Millennium, On the Tallest
Invisible Tower in the World

Karen An-hwei Lee

                                             

The tallest invisible tower in the world will not be the tallest skyscraper,
just the tallest invisible one.


It will only be invisible at certain times of day, from certain perspectives.
Therefore, it will not be invisible to everyone at every point in time
and every vantage point for viewing.


The invisibility, as proposed, will be simultaneously conceptual, illusory,
and artificial, which are not mutually exclusive states of being.


The invisibility shall be due to the light-emitting diodes of video-recorded views from various perspectives of the tower.


The recordings will be projected as facades either onto the tower or into space, or both, to create the illusion of transparency.


A sense of transparency will arise from the illusion of continuity in the landscape
or diurnal cloudscape behind the tower.


One could say, perhaps, invisibility and transparency are synonymous
in this proposed scenario.


The tallest invisible tower in the world will be in a megacity, near the airport
outside the necropolis.

Meditation on Figs and Hunger
in a Summer Blackout

Karen An-hwei Lee

                                                            

Echo a blind woman reading aloud, stirring –
root-colored iris flexing without sight.


Listen to eucalyptus stirring in a heat wave.
Rushing menthol after the fog rolls in, dulse mud


also rolls. Rolls in from the June sea, marine layer


of myrrh, dark cocoa mass, rose, clementine,

                          night-blooming lotus –


feral chartreuse parakeets of insomnia,

             something like fish-in-the-trees.


Song of a girl swallowing ice in the night,
tonsillectomy.


Where did you get the ice?

              I said, don’t open the refrigerator.


Song of coarse-skinned figs, rogue
off a gnarled tree crawling out of the sidewalk –


so green, the new skin sings, I will never bruise.


Under the lilacs, we count one-eyed car lights.


Unloose our raffia-bound hair –

                                         darkness on darkness.

 

Bilingual Beatitude on Sopapillas for Angels

Karen An-hwei Lee

                                                           

When I explain
to my peluquero in Santa Ana


there is no man ruling
over my household of one


and no children, I add –
soy es poeta.


When I wake in the morning,
if I desire to eat sopapillas,


fried quick-bread with sugar,
no one argues.


I make sopapillas with angels.


I try to say this in Spanish
but instead I say angeles


for argue. I end up saying
I make sopapillas


for angels. I say, blessed
are those who break


unleavened bread
with angeles.

 

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