for Megan & Guy
i found you luminous on a shelf over rows of unseasoned woks 100-year-old eggs, cellophane pungency and coriander still wet from the fields wrapped in the Chinese Daily.
an upright turquoise — the glaze is still trucked from Wuhan to Jingdezhen, city of porcelain (tho your base is stamped Factory 21 Shanghai, your lineage is the alchemists of the Tang Dynasty). collared with a sunny yellow (a grander pot would be gilded) it’s here the potter hurried the colour has run a little is thin in spots — but for 15 dollars you are a bargain a Peoples’ Republic spout and a handle that meets my grip like the handshake of a stranger i met drinking at an oasis. the heft of faithfulness keeps tea warm enough for a person drinking alone large enough for one who has dreamed of tea while walking in the desert until there was nothing else. inscribed with calligrams for long life, water, home and sunny days — and a lotus referencing the Buddha’s liberation from the cycle of rebirth, truly i am blessed — by your tannic volume my plain old Tetley’s is transmuted daily into this tea of good fortune.
Image: the Chinese ideogram for ‘tea’ – Tetley is a brand of tea. A piece for two friends who, on a whim, gave me a teapot from their cupboard, which is sitting next to me as I write.