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Janet Kuypers
on Facebook, written 9/2/18

He gave her the name
of the bamboo near my home

this bamboo that I love
that grow so high, so strong

and I didn’t want to care
for this strange creature,

even though he named her
after something I love

but more than that, he gave her
a name and he made her

more real than these bamboo trees.
It made me look for her,

want to give her food, water,
though I had to learn that before

she would accept anything from me
she would have to first come to me,

feel my hands along her, giving her
love, before she’d even think of food


and he thought, maybe we should
take her in, give her a home —

and I thought, I know I love all
but I don’t know if I can do this...

you know how it is, you think of
logistics, can you really bring in

another life in its final years
just to be heartbroken again.

So we’d bring out food, day after day,
give her extra water in the desert heat

and he said next week, next week
I’ll do it, I’ll bring her in

so we can check on her health
and then keep her forever

until this morning, we brought
out food, and there was no sign if her

not for minutes,
not for hours

she might have been
hiding in the bamboo

so we checked again, and a day went by
and there was still no sign of her life

so all we could do after then
was toast to the bamboo

that grew too proud, too strong
near our home

and contemplate the relationship
the might have been

my hand to an anim of jkchair

Kuypers at Artvilla

scars publications

Kuypers writing