- Eating Fish
I eat fish for breakfastI eat fish for lunchI eat fish for dinnerI eat fish most every dayFor when I don't I soon begin to itchAh Jing said, "I ate Ah Mi's mom."Been years since they threw her ashes into the PacificJust think of all the fish I have eaten from that seaEvery one deliciousFish scales scintillateBut when a fish dies that flash disappears, becomes fleshA flash I love to eatWhenever Ah Mi eats fish she thinks of her momEven wrote a poem on the subject, which makes me think of mineI think of both our momsAnd sometimes other moms as wellAh Mi's momHas her soul been on my tongue?And what of those saltier than soulsThose flashes with a delicate distinctionYet still my thoughts return toMomLying in that hospital wardIn a year or two I may well be eating herAnd Ah Mi will be tooAnd Ah Jing and Ah Liao and Ah Tun and Ah Fa and Ah Han and Ah CuiAnd all the others who are not so AhBut love to eat fishWe'll all be eating fish one day"Mmm," we'll say. "So savory" [End Page 9]
Amang 阿芒 was born and raised in Hualien, Taiwan. Her books of poetry in translation are On/Off: Selected Poems of Amang 1995–2002 (2003) and No Daddy (2008). She is a teacher in Taipei.
Steve Bradbury taught English literature in Taiwan for many years, and now lives in Florida. His books of translation include Poems from the Prison Diary of Ho Chi Minh (2003) and Feelings Above Sea Level: Prose Poems from the Chinese of Shang Qin (2006). His translation of Hsia Yu's Salsa (2014) was shortlisted for the Lucien Stryk Prize.