Agnes Hanying Ong




It has begun, it has not begun. How happy
words caught like fish, bone. Mother, how happy

Are those who mourn, mother, who’s thank-God hypochondriac?
Paradised, lost and deep bass, grandfather’s WWII-happy.

But to be born again? Ah, keep Banana Money fire as apple
peel, in the zoo trumpeting in theatre, such a day of happy.

Aunt says you’re all cursed. Aunt gets me, aunt gets mon amour a
Stormie Omartian’s Lord, I want to Be Wholememento-happy!

Before it’s too late! Hurry, to be born again! While stocks last!
When a child, I spoke like a child. Kinder, Wunder hatched happy.

I learn never too redeemed, a pure bride just in time! Weeee
martyrs, no dying. I pool-step a foundry, melt in murals. Happy.

I’ll die chamber’s walls, be in that number, this saint to mirror
another. Serenity. Sassoferratos Mary. Chaplet of bones, happy?

Is a call. I salamander hymen, between moment & eternal! Woman
& mind mori. In my Michelangelomother tests, if nuns must happy.

What mother asks, in lingo ripe with sequins, is must nuns be virgins?
I hear happy. Houri! Expire, smiling like roses, decades of happy.






My English (dear Lord)
breakfast tea cannot wake me.

A morning text’s saying Enjoying life
and parenthood, as ever o it coos by

the window, how passing snows were to
knit in her mother’s womb the shovel

shape of mother’s incisors, o how
I used to try to find mine in sun

visor mirror, amidst luncheon bits.
In the beginning, a sweet o pineapple

defanged the resonance o’ language.
As o’ clock ticks faster in dreams,

the hungry pineapple takes a bite
out o’ Big Apple, out o’ Voltaire

& Labrador till they’re volt & lab,
ig pp, soul out of an expired

sardine can, lips tight, parsleyed sparsely
o New Yorker! I just want to know,

where’s the subway station, o sweet soup
most watered down soup o’ soups holiest

& most prayed o’er. Translucent, like
a seconds-old sword, or tooth, edge

scrutinous or cord or just Cheshire
Cat. I can scarcely remember how

conservatives’ hearts don’t bleed, how proper
kernings make salt souse and salute

hors d’oeuvre, how father’s father’s father’s
father’s father must have gnashed will to stay

put and crunched o crunched away from lodestar
at eternity’s shore, oaring the rocked

rothkos of warmer waters.



Agnes Hanying Ong writes poetry to learn Theory of Mind, theology and intricacies of human sexuality. Her poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in Gravel Magazine, Drunk Monkeys, 2019 Surrealist/Outsider Anthology, Rogue Agent Journal, The Ilanot Review, Failed Haiku and other wondrous places. She is based in Kuala Lumpur and London.

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