Endowed in perpetuity by the Glenna Luschei Fund for Excellence



By David McKirdy

The bamboo grove outside my bedroom window clicks and clacks
a living breathing wind chime
that whistles and whispers
the secrets of lives governed by seasons
unaltered for generations.

Hakka wanderers brought by the wind
came here
seduced to stay
by the sheltered cove
sweet fresh water
and these same soporific sounds.

I was the first foreigner for years
now we outnumber the villagers
and vote for each other at election time
seeking to civilise, educate
stop the building
stop the fishing
improve the marine ecology.

I voted for Mr. Yung Tin San
a Hakka elder
a realist who values tradition
he was elected by a majority of one.

Sometimes I think the wind brought me here.


a photo of David McKirdy

David McKirdy hails from Scotland but spent his formative years in Hong Kong. He is a poet and a former director of the Man Hong Kong International Literary Festival. He is also one of the organizers of the local poetry group OutLoud. McKirdy earned his honour’s degree in western arts and humanities from the Open Learning Institute (now the Open University of Hong Kong). His first book is Accidental Occidental: A Collection of Poems. McKirdy also has his own business repairing vintage cars.

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