The Poetry Project

Two Pieces

Fei Li

this is a detail of an abstract, mixed-media painting. the predominant colors are hues of blue, green, yellow, and brown; the pieces features large washes of blue and yellow with gestural brushworks overlaid. the overlaid brushwork is loose, whimsical, light, and squiggly, and sometimes resembles leaves
Jinwei (detail); mixed media painting; 2021 © Fei Li

Jingwei, meaning “Spirit-Guardian'', is a bird in Chinese mythology. She is also a goddess. After being drowned by the Eastern Sea, she metamorphosed into a bird and made a sound like its name, Jingwei. She continuously carries stones or twigs in her mouth and drops them into the sea, determined to fill it up.

Between The Kitchen and The Moon

I hear my bones floating inside the flesh
like colliding wine glasses
blood whipping chest playing the trumpet and stretching
to the sky. The bass pushes the pelvis.
My tail sweeps the floor and opens the faucet
and turns the washing machine on. Thunder
rumbles. Honey wraps me up.
Spin, spin, spin.
Nails no longer hold the secret. They follow the river
and the sound wave travels back through the spine.
Night whispers in the boiling water, faraway.
I enter a rolling dark cloud.
Step on the smell of fresh bread.
At the bottom of my foot, a woman
turns into a wolf.

Work from We Are How We Live: Collectivity & Care In & Beyond the Household with Rebecca Teich