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Fiction by Lily Hoang
"Dance of an Old Monk"
Music by Suchoon Mo
Sprouting  by John BarbatoSprouting

Brother Big brother preferring plants already grown plants blooming colors vibrant. Sister Big sister not caring about plants at all. Me the youngest buying seeds & soil & putting fingers into dirt & then waiting for sprouts.


Mother & I dressed in black to match with night & Mother & I on toes tipping into someone else’s house to steal a branch of bright yellow & I getting cut & Mother kissing & us putting it in water to grow new.

 That at the beginning not the very beginning but soon after beginning it is always most difficult. Image of seed beginning to sprout against dirt pushing up. Image of fetus growing to baby squeezing body through bone canal just to breathe. That at the beginning not the very beginning but soon after beginning it is necessary to be difficult & that us lovers fight sometimes is necessary & that us lovers wake nights without sleep sweating nervous about something is ok.

 Jack not believing in magic & Jack buying magical bean & Jack putting it into the ground & Jack not even giving it water but the sky wanting a friend giving it water until stalk of bean penetrates clouds so giant.

If metaphors then metaphors & if us lovers were plants then we would have been planted together in one pot & then before us lovers sprouted me lover I would be separated but months later we’d be reunited.

The bottom three being thunder & the upper three being water reading this a hexagram reading thunder over water that this is supposed to be read from bottom to top & you needing instructions that are right here.


 Teller of fates telling for this one this third hexagram saying: Difficulty at the beginning works supreme success. Furthering through perseverance. Nothing should be undertaken alone. It furthers one to appoint helpers.

Little girl sitting on Father’s lap & little girl with her little hand reaching upwards to the night & little girl's hand intersecting with Father’s face & little girl squealing little laughter at Father’s prickly beard she loves.

I am telling you even now that this is not easy but only now that soon it will be easier that I am now your teller of fates that this is not my domain that only briefly I will stop being a storyteller to help you with this now.

Us lovers were not always lovers that there were ones before you & the one before you lover he was my first real lover long lover & he gave me lover he put inside me lover a thing that sprouted & I lover I tell you this while shading eyes embarrassed that I lover I didn’t want it lover & I tried to give it back without receipts without tags & so they put it in a bag lover like a vacuum & took it away & I didn’t even cry lover can you believe it lover I didn’t even cry a drop.
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last update: November 19, 2008