Current Occupation: Academic Librarian Job Candidate; and President of the Apartment & Family Student Council, Indiana University Bloomington
Former Occupation: Reference Services Assistant, Wells Library, Indiana University Bloomington
Contact Information: Hiromi Yoshida has worked in academic libraries throughout most of her graduate student career. Winner of multiple Indiana University Writers' Conference awards, her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Clockwise Cat; The Rain, Party, & Disaster Society; Borderline; Evergreen Review; Bathtub Gin; Flying Island; and the Matrix anthologies of literary and visual arts. She loves the smell of old books and pending rain.
I remember her porcelain fragility—the way she handled her neurosis
carefully like medieval embroidery, or Ming china, her eggshell
lining skin shot through with Botox injections and other
kinds of invective that hadn’t been invented yet. Her alcoholic
fingers stapled photocopy askew: she couldn’t align the ruler with
her hemline to see who measured up to whom despite her giraffe
height. Thus we were caged birds of a different
species from each other singing shrill ditties for the supper that never
came to us at the Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Department we cohabited.
We wasted time on the clock begging the hairy
prince to come to us like a good Neanderthal in a silver G-string.
And maybe he did come for us to perform the Chippendale’s dance
behind locked doors, gyrating voyeuristic
Vaseline moves in skewed Manhattan moonlight. Yet she remains
for me the porcelain lady with her raucous neuroses: She gawks at me
from behind the torn lace years—mistress of bitchy vodka moods.
Today, I’m sorry I never knew anything
about the rain she saw behind eyelids shuttered against the storm that bothered her
when she told me about her hairy pedophilic uncle. Perhaps she
saw him standing in the moonglare behind
my back. At least we know he shouldn’t have reached into the pubic
spaces of her body like parks closed after Sunday dark. After all these years, perhaps we
can escape the ILL cage we cohabited, once upon a time when the prince came to us in
the scintillating regalia of respective desire for liberation from our father the hairy ape and the luciferian angel of antediluvian mercy and elusive catharsis.
And perhaps the caged birds will sing again and won’t fall
off their easy perches into narcissistic sunlight. And perhaps
an invective has been invented by now for Ming china, and we can dig our way to
the other side of the moon.