Here, they talk about life differently

A black speck of a boat
On the yellow river –
the origin of the world

This bend and then another bend
Will soon reach the destination choppy waves
The things one wants to say to the other person
Luminous.

On either side of that sentence
Flag poles erected in a line
Drenched in rain in this month of Waso

As if the whole town replied simultaneously
In the same dull tone
That also happened to be a morning

As the top of a seven-storey building
While carefully choosing strata words, the screeching of crows
scratching on the zinc roof

Showing some entertainment or the other
On TV too, static sound from the next channel
Like sand and broken rice stirred together

That snakes slough off skin to grow, suddenly
Suddenly slithers past
On TV in which sand and broken rice are stirred

Old lions searching for bits of flesh between bones
One, two, three, the grass all dry and brown
To keep the colours intact the sun laminates all

Buy and read the daily papers
Throw stuff into the daily papers
Then wrap the daily papers in the daily papers

The switched-on fan beside the bed, too,
Stirs some dried grass.

Moe Way
2011
Translated from the Burmese by Zeyar Lynn