No Food or Drink on the Train

Below the sign,
Grandma sits.

She’s read signs before.
Read the advancing of Japanese,
Betrayal of Communists,
Swelling of unwed daughter,
Tea leaves swirling,
And survived them all.

So she takes from her bag
A perfect forbidden persimmon.

She does not look askance.
Not mischievously.
Not look.
Her leathery fingers work their way through silk.

Juice collects,
Cataracts onto her lap.

Below the sign,
Grandma sits,
Bringing paradise
To her lips.

a photo of Timothy Kaiser

About the Author

Timothy Kaiser was born in America and raised in Canada. His works have appeared in various international publications. In 2003, his story “Mother Margaret and the Rhinoceros Café” was awarded first prize in the Canadian Cross-Cultural Short Story Competition. Kaiser has held various teaching positions in Japan, Canada, and Hong Kong. Currently, he is a vice principal at the Canadian International School of Hong Kong. His poetry collection, Food Court, came out in 2003.