#28ChineseMemories Day 11: Portrait of Appalachian-Chinese Girls in Their Grandmother’s Garden

With my sister Lisa when we were kids.
With my sister Lisa when we were kids.

As I’d mentioned in my previous post, my grandparents had a garden in their backyard when I was a kid. We grew big winter melons and zucchini, pouring smelly fertilizer to help them grow. I remember the tall stalks and how maze-like the whole garden felt.

Both at my grandparents’ and at my house we had college-aged next-door neighbors: mainly frat boys, and they were loud and obnoxious. One time, my sister Lisa and I were in our grandparents’ garden when our noisy next-door neighbors yelled down at us, “HEY!”

My sister Lisa was the first to look and I heard her gasp; I remember she told me, “Sis, don’t look!” But I looked anyway: the guys were mooning us in broad daylight!

That memory has been etched so deeply into our psyche that my sister, who is a poet, wrote a poem about that moment. Her poem is much more descriptive than this blog post here. You can listen to her read this poem and a couple of her other poems at The Poets’ Weave, part of Indiana Public Media.