Lo Kwa Mei-en

Transmission from the Factory



Alarms go off when I’m online   Obedience is on


Offer   Sir, the doll I am is a fine ditz


But later, with you, she becomes my


-Self   I’m blinking and blooming by


Computer nightingale   The information is so rude


It doesn’t hurt   The doll I am is a remix


Divining the feminine at the speed of data


In the end I swipe the dooming glow


Erasing the universe, and a breasted, lunar


Wave shatters to find a shudder on TV


Forget ardor, bro, and after that, armor—


For atoms stay and anthems go, beau


Glib gears reproduce my body in www but not


In world, not yet   I’m the flesh market


Hell sent back for blinding it   And say I did


Say it was a lark   If I wake to bliss


In fact, I do not show my face   Just


Feel that   The wonder is the blister


Just gets bigger when I rip me off


Us   The doll I am is a film rated Q


Kissing forehead for infinite hours in a finite


Plane   Do I feel feeling   Or fucking up


Lo, I burn on the shelf but it’s just light, less


Angry than anxious, my art   I have no


Money but in a neutral machine that hones


On my mettle its slurry honey and on and on

Aubade for First-Generation Kids



Z-particles make a hive of the distance,          buzz, buzz.

Young aliens leave a mother’s ship to translate the deadly


Xeriscape and live                    as citizens roll in the ideal rolodex,

Wander the earth                    as the hands of extinction fall asleep   in a row.


Vents in the universe vomit the years, and boycott versus maglev

Usage takes years to argue                   with my parents in lieu,


Terribly,           of a common habitat.

Space before us, space between—its excess


Regrets me, an identifiable object, and my face, a traitor

Quizzed by her own questioning.                                Q:


Pools of activity imply planning. Children in a kingship

Only obey when necessary. You thought you could undo


                        National knots. When?                A:        Alien

Maiden reporting for nothing,                    madman ma’am


Looking right through me.                                    I cannot call

Kept at arm’s length the measure of sacrifice, making mock


Juvenilia of me,           the offspring raised on wheat and OJ.

I wither down to poem what I cannot plead, a bouquet of narcissi


Hurting to be shaken at the sky.          What hurts like a kilo of flesh

Grown quickly in winter                     in the year of gravid splitting?


First-generation kids crowd the blatant, alien fields of

Electric pollen. A mother’s yellow coat is a pheromone


Dredging the world’s distance in information’s cold-

Call home, and hope,               or a scent half as tragic.


Bombastic as an egg in my mother in her mother’s womb

Am I awake.    What time is it, ma?     It’s me—bee-sting, little brava.


LO KWA MEI-EN is the author of YEARLING (Alice James Books 2015), winner of the Kundiman Poetry Prize. Her poems can be found in Black Warrior Review, Boston Review, Poetry NorthwestThe Kenyon Review, and other journals. She is from Singapore and Ohio, and lives and works in Cincinnati.