A Very Personal Reflection on My Lesson about Lord of the Flies

by Nicholas YB Wong

Pedophiles also love plants.
Mimosa, for example. Or anything that

folds like the skin around the dimples
of these kids. Their flesh so clean, so free
from the trauma of hugs. Rain

pours outside, I think of pineapples



& how my face looks like one.
Instructions: Who said these lines (& in

what context would you say them to me)?
This head is for the beast
It’s a gift / You’re not wanted
/ The world… slipping away / maybe it’s only us /
I painted my face now you eat
and I –



Pages are turned like the body of
a cheap whore, casually but with

expectation. The kids bury their heads
between lines, between thighs, to look for
a remedy for adulthood. How one loses one’s

head just by growing up.


Blanks in worksheets are bald heads (incl.
mine). Fill them with

hairs. (yours)


I play a film clip in which a conch
breaks. Calcium is symbolic in its

 shattering:
you all escape, upon the bell, for vanilla
scoops & I, scopophilic in class with goose
-bumps on my arm honking. Certain

taboos require a table & a book to sound dirty.

Nicholas YB Wong received his MFA at the City University of Hong Kong and is the author of Cities of Sameness. He is a finalist of New Letters Poetry Award and a semi-finalist of the Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize. He is on the editorial board of Drunken Boat and Mead: Magazine of Literature and Libations. Corgis are his favorite human breed.