in an elevator in busan, south korea, 2008:
my father, corralled into one corner by
my brother, swinging invisible ninja swords at
me, trying to keep my cool, and
my mother, standing to the side.
the stranger, headed two floors above,
draws no correlation between the trio and the beautiful woman.
only 6, I know my mother is fit to be a model,
that my brother and I were cast from my father’s mold.
girls steal their mother’s beauty,
but at 16, my eyes still contain none of her depth
and my face, nothing of her smile lines, the magnum opus of a retired artist.
you resemble your mother more every day
and at 20, I think I see it–
the shape of our lips that tighten the more we want to say something,
our tears that flow more freely at cinematic hardships than our own,
the parallel rows of photos in text bubbles to show how we are living apart from each other
and our tendency to romanticize the past and the future,
in which i am her good luck and she is everything to me.