They were wanderers, my father's people,
sailing from China to other lands,
hopping from island to island.
My parents, too, left home and family,
a chain of thin blue airmail letters
crisscrossing seas in their wake.
I went as well, first a short journey,
then a longer one: letters, phone calls,
email, none of it adequate.
I remember my mother remembering
how her father once brushed her hair.
Now I'm the one remembering.
(First published in Ship of Fools)