In loops reminiscent of planetary arcs
she’d sail to the far corners of the earth
then return for some respite and a soft, clean bed
she lit up doorways and gained favor
by learning the ancient greetings of her hosts
peering into their worlds through newly borrowed words
Once home, she’d unpack new stories
of long hikes, throbbing feet
and close calls
each one starting with a greeting of place
From the cabbie in Guangzhou
Have you eaten?
The warriors of Masai
How are the children?
In the rarified air of Bhutan
Is your body well?
And my favorite
from the Twi of Ghana
How is your soul perceiving the world?