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This is a poem I wrote early in the last decade when I was in China with my friend Alan Ball. It’s dedicated to him.

Cold in China
The Communist Party meeting in Beijing

Willow trees and brown mountains
crumbling

So many people and
sometimes it seems like they are all
Here

Eating on the street
Looking over our shoulders for
homicidal traffic

Transformer bicycles
That can do anything

Live butchering in the markets
DVD/VCD

Dead miners, bus crashes,
train crashes
Everybody talking all at once
Music

And I tone deaf.

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