My Father in His Old Age

There is a Korean belief that you are born
the parent of the one you hurt most. Watching
my father use chopsticks to split chicken katsu,
he confesses that I may be the reincarnation
of his own father. We finished our waters in silence
and walked home chatting about who to blame
for where we are. He says, the present is the revenge
of the past. Revenge goes too far, I argue. And
in our unhappiness, we both want to know
we cannot pay enough. Pain becomes meaning.
After this life, I fear I’ll never meet him again.

— E J Koh, more E J KOH

T. S. Poetry

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