Just an Idea

One day it struck me—
that I really should do something
in return for my gift for poetry. So
I approached my pastor
and asked if I could be allowed
to read my poems in church.

He promptly directed me to a woman
in charge of Ladies’ Fellowship,
who thought for a moment
before asking if I could read a poem
in praise of mothers (which would be
very appropriate for their next meeting,
since Mother’s Day was approaching).

After considering the proposition,
I had to tell her I didn’t have a single poem
about mothers. There was a pause—
before she said she would call me
sometime later. And walking away,
I took with me a sullen feeling
that perhaps the whole idea
wasn’t such a bright one to begin with.

by Yong Shu Hoong
from dowhile (2002)


SELECTED POEMS: "The Key of Songs" >