by J. Kates

after Dai Wangshu

A girl with a bucket of water walks
through a landscape of her own ideas.
She doesn’t see how her bucket leaks
lightly on the roadside grass.

Her house is an enchanted castle
enchained in ivy and loving parents.
She is dreaming of the boy who kissed her
and turned at once into a prince.

A threat of lightning, grumble of thunder,
sunshine dapples a cloudy sky.
We leave her there on the path, around her
nothing like what was, will be.


“A Country Girl” has been published in Cyphers.