Mountain Seeds Poems by Sylvia Yoon Kim


How I wish my soul could sing again

Skies and angels I climbed on

Without a glimpse of the heights


I fell


Unknowing that wings were a gift

Clouds weren’t free

And stars took time to burn


I saw


Mountains moved by mustard seeds

But to climb takes an awfully long time


Naivety has been a boulder on my neck

I once wished to be seasoned

But now I am burnt


I worry


My days away by not if’s and could have’s but

What if I never can

What if I never will


Myself into nothing more than my illusions

Which plummet in comparison to greatness




I long for you like a child begging for a sweet

But the cavity of my reality is bitter


I fear


That dreams are nothing more than daydreams

And the everyday is painstakingly today and forever


I worry


Like a lost dog who no longer has a home

Sniffing for a new place to fill when there are

No more cracks of pavement to grow through


I wake


Disillusioned to my daydreams

And self-prophesies


How I wish

How I wish

How I wish my soul could sing again



Nakedly free are we

Who discovered

Mountains grow from seeds


We who felt the sound of trees

Birds flapping their wings


We who knew to feel the sun

While it was still gleaming


If only so

To grow


And breathe


When the awaited darkness

Sweeps a desert clean of its

Relations to the sun

Scattering dust on our skin


But knowing

That we

Once again



Dance nakedly free

With the stars

And galaxies


Throwing away the

Novelty of newness

For a chance to see

Our bodies being carved


Into magnificent mountains

From beautifully torn apart seeds


For the blessings from woe are these



Swallowing pain

Is like swallowing glass

With a smile


There’s a hidden chest

Buried in the bottom of my belly

Breathing with afterlives of your presence


Amidst blessed ignorance I lost the key

The glass inside scraped through my veins

Making itself known through everyone I have known


With a possessive chokehold I hold heavy

Around those I’m begging love me

Love me so I can be set free


With a siren in my mind

Screaming leave leave

Before they all disappear and leave


With a sudden soliloquy formed from tears

I wonder why this river of glass has yet

To stop flowing


Eyes closed

Never stopped an ocean

From making waves


I craved for you once

Sewn into the needs of a child

Like milk I needed you


Your cratering absence

Like a forest of once lush trees

Beheaded before it learned to blow in the wind


But thank God for mustard seeds

And the roots that were out of reach

Of your absence grew into mountains


Tall enough to see that I had a Father

All along but he’s telling me to forgive

You the indent of a piece that still feels hollow


My father did you know you have a father too

Not the one you parade around

With imaginary whiteness


But the one who sees and

Still loves what I cannot love

This glass that scrapes through my veins


My gracious God has transformed to water

That runs but time is running out

For me to find you


Or for you to ever wish to find me

I’m waiting for the day

When I can keep my eyes open and breathe



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