The Chinese-Peruvian poet Julia Wong Kcomt wrote two poems for Words Without Borders about her experiences as a product of two different cultures. I'm particularly interested in the first of them, entitled "The Red Rooster", which begins and ends with the following two verses:

Peru dies.
Like garlic bulbs
this whim of blouses
cut so masterfully.

Our Peru is dying.
The rooster’s crow will return when the stone flies.

What is going on in this poem? Why is Peru dying? What is the relevance of garlic, blouses, iron windows, paint, and ovaries? What do the cherry tree, the sakura, the lotus flower, and the olive bush symbolise? Why is Jesus Christ sifting through grape seeds? Why is the rooster important, and what does "the stone flies" refer to? What is the poet indicating about her feeling regarding Chinese culture and Peruvian culture - does the poem suggest one as more important than the other?

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.