Sorting Through Mail at a Senior Home I make small piles on my desk To separate the residents Who have passed and those still waiting For letters that they’ll throw away. Envelopes sticky in my hands, The weight of the dead has brushed my shoulders. Of those that have recipients, I line them neatly between my fingers, As magazines and flyers try To carve my webbings papercuts, But the sandy edges have been dulled By the neglect that comes with age. And order matters, too. The ones Who can hear my knocking are first, and I leave The man who reminds me of my grandpa For last, my conscience too afraid Their ghosts will look the same to me, That this poem, too, will end prematurely. Interview It doesn’t matter If my background fits the mold When my dad works here. These are words I wish I could say with confidence, And truth, as a bold Intro and outro To the perfect interview. To those on the fence Before our meeting, Just relax. I look forward To working with you. Use me as you please, But beware, you’ll get more use Out of a cheese board. When I click on Zoom, I try to fix my floral Tie. Its noose is loose. If my dad really Worked here, I could throw away This tie called morals.
Dylan Tran is a Pushcart-nominated Chinese American poet based in Washington, DC. He strives to uplift the Asian American voice in literature, while walking the fine line between culture and otherness. Outside of writing, Dylan can be found working a diverse handful of jobs, from activities programming at a senior home, to curatorial work at the National Museum of American History, and more. His poems appear or are forthcoming in Volume, El Portal, Dipity Literary Magazine, and elsewhere.
Image: “Enveloppes des lettres de Clotilde de Vaux à Comte” by Kurebayashi under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International License.