the power and the glory

Back to Issue 15

if not the rain, then the comeuppance,
the cool strain of tender submission,
the wreaking of a new morning, like blood,
like breaking, this scrupulous flow
of energy, dry flash of lightning,

was it as ochre? as
oleander? a burning
flood? a cliché
of light?

basking in a life that did not
become, the kites circle a clearing
of clouds. the storm feeds into
blessing, horror, or change. the land
is shattered into three parts. mercy
sugars the soil that starves.

By Jonathan Chan

Jonathan Chan is a writer and editor of poems and essays. Born in New York to a Malaysian father and South Korean mother, he was raised in Singapore and educated at Cambridge and Yale Universities. He is the author of the poetry collection going home (Landmark, 2022) and Managing Editor of He has recently been moved by the work of Rowan Williams, Ada Limón, and Toh Hsien Min. More of his writing can be found at