They intend to awe men in Aomen

At the Ruins of St. Paul’s, Macau with my family, April 2012. Photo courtesy of Sonny Doctor.

 

They intend to awe men in Aomen

There, history becomes the pavement,
the yellow and blue you can just walk on,
and a colonial past is sold
five patacas a picture, ten a keychain, three for twenty.

By the time you reach the top step
you will be breathless
at the sight of Ruins, of Lisboa
and of tree branches heavy with pink.

Stanley will show you how
cabbages are carved from jade
and tree carved from tower,
while Wynn’s tree, or dragon (depends on the time)
will come out from the ground.
The dragons in the City of Dreams though
will be made of gold, or light.
And Sands will strip two islands bare
of each other’s distance and link them together
as it links piers on canals four storeys above,
peppered with gondolas,
and as it paints the sky
in ever day
on its bird-chirping ceilings.

In Galaxy’s high suites
The city lights become the stars
Constellating before your feet.

There, you are free to drink (coke or milk tea?)
to eat (almond cake or bakkwa?)
to roam (walk, or hotel bus?)
to dream (roulette or poker?)

But even there, ah even there!
Love is not even free,
No housekeeping
can put her warmth in Venetian pillows,
and no special lights
can project on your window-night
a reflection of her beside you,

for loneliness is unsinkable
even there, where money flows
even there in Macau, Monte Carlo of the Orient,
Mirror-sea reflecting
her absence
the meagerness of millions
mere mei (not even chow!)
in the mahjong of the heart

How luck and money
cannot even win love
or buy away loneliness
will awe men in Aomen

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