David Trinidad

from Sleeping with Bashō
January 24, 2024 Trinidad David

from Sleeping with Bashō


Growing out
of clouds
like a cedar tree—
Mount Fuji.
Nursery Rhyme
The flea
jumped over
Mount Fuji.
Still Alive
Can’t you feel the coolness
under my summer hat?
Trysting Place
Though miles apart,
tonight we’ll meet secretly
beneath the same moon.
Souvenir Fan
Brings wind from
the Mount Fuji
painted on it.
Priority Overnight
On the other hand,
these clouds have blown
hundreds of miles
to deliver this cool air.
Moon over Tokyo
You rarely see
such a heavenly body
in this filthy city.
At best,
how many more springs
will I live to see?
Old Toys
I’m a grown man.
Success at Last
Poetry fame
is not fame fame.
On the Mountaintop
Letters of mist that
vanish before
they can be read.
A Cat in Love
Visits his wife
as often as mine
visits the oven.
From a Fairy Tale
At low tide, you can see
the glistening treasures
the underwater palace
has laid out to dry.
Is That Stupid Bird Hawking Vegetables Now?
Waiting for the first call
of the cuckoo, I hear
the greengrocer instead.
Don’t Be a Litterbug
People eat their rice
dumplings, then throw
the reed-leaf wrappers
Glow in the Dark
The summer sea
casting its blue nets
all along the shore.
Swimming at Night
Drenched in sweat
under the mosquito net.
Empty Shell
The cicada skipped
town without collecting
his security deposit.

David Trinidad’s books of poetry include Digging to Wonderland: Memory Pieces (2022), Notes on a Past Life (2016), Peyton Place: A Haiku Soap Opera (2013), and Dear Prudence: New and Selected Poems (2011).  He is also the editor of A Fast Life: The Collected Poems of Tim Dlugos (2011) and Punk Rock Is Cool for the End of the World: Poems and Notebooks of Ed Smith (2019).  Trinidad lives in Chicago, where he is a Professor of English and Creative Writing at Columbia College.