This week, a poem by Yanyi.

 

Group Text

 

Our friends include us on a group
text about something we should do together.
Most days, no one calls us, but everyone’s
busy, away, typing, delivered, voicemail
has not been set up yet. Read at 7:10, typing,
we like the message, we like being messaged,
we, like the message, delivered. 7:11. Like
like the store, like Beyoncé, like we don’t care.
Our friends will like the reference. Our friends
do like the reference. Time, date, reservations,
friends on reserve, we are reserved. Canceling
will incur a penalty fee. Venmo me this time.
Tip is included. We are included. So nice
to share statuses, so nice to share values, so
nice to share us spending time on our values.
We like each other because we hate Cynar,
we like umami, we like uni, we like browsing
Airbnb forever for our next vacation. We
share a link to the restaurant, very fresh fish,
new picks, new chefs. We get refreshments,
we freshen up. We share the same photos,
we share the same friends, we share the
same impulse to share photos with our friends.
We share a reference, we share a reference.
We share a cab, we share a laugh. We share
a pizza that costs two dollars and two pizza
emojis. Charge me before I forget. Our
friends will forget. What we did this week-
end. Forget it.

——

YANYI is a writer and critic. In 2018, he won the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize, awarded by Carl Phillips, for his first book, The Year of Blue Water (Yale University Press, 2019). He is an MFA candidate for poetry at New York University and the recipient of fellowships from Asian American Writers’ Workshop and Poets House. Find him at yanyiii.com.



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