Nights in the Forbidden City
A eunuch stares.
Head lowered, I drop my clothes.
Naked, I am rolled in a rug that he has brought.
Carried off on his back
across the Forbidden Palace's courtyards
I am ushered to the edge of a room
where the Emperor stands with crossed arms.
Somberly the Emperor runs his finger
along my shoulders, down my chest.
I shut down, imagine my mother in her straw shoes
bent over the village well...
He touches my breasts, and I become water
trembling in a bucket in Gaojiagou.
By Bob BradshawQLRS Vol. 9 No. 4 Oct 2010