Kimiko Hahn


Like the fruit fly         I have difficulty

                                                                        if given a hard perceptual choice                                             and also take longer because the brain needs to integrate information   until it has enough to make a decision.           Like them, I deliberate

                        rather than merely       act impulsively--though I do that as well. 

And my brain can also be compared to a leaky bucket of water.             But

            more surprising           than a fruit fly                         making up its mind


                                    is that it has a mind                     of its own.               I think.  


Unlike the Komodo Dragon,               I have not bitten          Sharon Stone's husband's toe.

            Unlike the Komodo Dragon,               my saliva cannot kill a man.    And    

I don't have the pleasure         of residing in a Beaux-Arts building. 

                                                                                                            With indoor pool.      

            And I don't smell things with my darting       forked tongue.

                        Also,               unlike the Komodo Dragon,

I'm cute and cuddly                 --really.  But like one,             I too am

vulnerable, responsive, and inquisitive.          And not always available.                   And,

            like one,           I           monitor. I am                          An Amazing Monitor

--especially of the husband--                          and I've been known       to attack humans.    


Like the elephant shark, I must possess         a primitive system                  that prefers

shallow            shallows,                     dark darkness,

                                                                                                mucky murkiness.  I mean

like them            I’ve not                    been granted                           immunity

            yet carry on as if                     nothing will                 fuck with me.

Kimiko Hahn

Kimiko Hahn is the author of nine collections of poetry, most recently, Brain Fever and Toxic Flora. Both of these are triggered by rarified fields of science; previous subjects include Asian American identity, women's issues, The Tale of Genji, necrophilia, entomology, premature burial, black lung disease, and so on. She is a distinguished professor in the MFA Program in Creative Writing & Literary Translation at Queens College, The City University of New York.