Retroactively Potent

GrasshopperWanting to use ‘I am your boomerang’ in a poem,
I Googled to make sure no one else had used the metaphor.

But of course someone else had thought of it before. He also
wrote about Carolina oak and lusting after wet grass.

This experience reminded me of my disappointment
when discovering in a Biology lesson that the triangular head

of the pet green grasshopper
my sisters and I had been nursing
in my father’s potted boxwood
was not, as we naively boasted, unique.

Tomorrow I will write of squared coins
and electric lampposts that grow thorns.

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Tammy Ho Lai-Ming is a Hong Kong-born writer currently based in London, UK. She is a founding co-editor of Cha: An Asian Literary Journal and the poetry editor of Fleeting magazine. Her photography has previously been published in Stirring, Juked, Litterbox, and Subliminal Interiors, among other places. More at

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Hanna Elson is a poet and a songwriter from New York. She attended SUNY New Paltz's Creative Writing program. Her work has recently been published in Stirring, filling Station and Magpie Magazine.

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