Land-grabbers drink to the health of the president of snails.
Snails’ president, a land-grabber himself, scoops up soot
from his purple liver & builds from it a nation that goes by
various names: Myanmar League, Terror of Laiza, Hepatitis B.
Himalayan tigers walk behind me. What do you think they got
to remind me? Now it’s raining in the middle of summer
& the rain tessellates People’s Square with road kill.
Something’s wrong if equestrian statues are still getting paid.
The flower-biting ogress, the first lady of snails,
puts a diamond-studded leash on her six-legged pit bull.
The dog eats looted gold. I wish it’d just explode,
its entrails shooting up against gravitational pull.
Every village is a shepherd, every villager a sheep.
Inside every sheep, a tombstone. Before you comb the hair
of one-hundred-year-old shadows, you’d better delouse them.
Would I want a house full of dead sparrows? No, I wouldn’t.
Maung Day is a Burmese poet, writer, and artist living in Thailand. He has published three books of poetry in Burmese and his poems in English have appeared in international magazines such as The Wolf, The Awl, and International Poetry Review.
Feature image by Scott Anderson