Once, I arrived in a new old country
without emptying my wallet of the previous coins.
For two years, the two dollar cranes nuzzled
and nudged three headed lions; strange alliances in my coin purse.
I liked it that way.
Sure, it always took a little longer to dig around in my wallet
but I liked the romanticism of being a girl who is patient even with exact change,
who doesn’t know where she belongs.
When I told my friend this, confessed to it when we met in a third soil, she laughed at me.
“That doesn’t make sense,” she told me, so I took the other coins out of my wallet
and lived a single currency life.
But I’m a person who moves, and I’m trying to embrace that,
So I sorted through the jingling edges of the people I’ve been and the places I’ve been them with
and picked favourites:
one shimmering yuan ten shiny baht twenty invalid cents one forgettable penny five pence fifty paise and an anoymous sliver of metal that may not be a coin at all, which says ‘5’ and ‘1983’ on it. I can’t quite live a single currency life and
I’m not going to.
The coins clink in the edges of my wallet, and when
I fish around for the right pieces, I find them: brushing against my fingers like manifested hope.
One day, I will kiss a boy, and our teeth will clink together
Like coins from unforeign countries.