‘Diaspora’ by Inez Tan

Our noodles that were from either northern or southern
China, where I had never been before, were
utterly strange and familiar at the same time.
I confessed: I know which ancestral village
my great-grandparents came from, but I’ve
never wanted to go there. I can’t imagine
being welcomed.
My friend answered:
I think people would be very curious.
I think they would want to know who you were
and where you’ve been. It’s the easiest thing,
to take in a stranger.
There is no one way
to be Chinese, anywhere, I
have decided, although both of us
packed our leftovers into plastic containers
that we will wash and reuse
as many times as we can.
There are many ways to be related.


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