STAR POems: China Town, London

Made in China,

nurtured in London.


I parade a toy town

in China Town,

picking up oranges with exotic names.

Fruit sellers with ‘painfully British’

on their passports.


I am British, quarter Chinese.


I still window shop at Chinese buffets;

I’m not the one serving the pompoms to customers.

Smelling the aromas of special festivities

which I do not celebrate.

I wonder if dishes come with rice.

Separate plates,

onion bhajis in napkins.


It comes as a culture shock,

the sore sight of Hollister bags

when I’m keen to embrace

my Chinese surname.

Authentic lanterns dress the smart

second apartments

of ritzy inhabitants.

I accompany the image of businessmen

and women,

the starkness of their tailored suits.

I encourage the divide –

cultured individuals and factory-made Brits.

I point out the double barrel in the register.


Left or right and I return to a traffic light.

The disruption of road works

finished yesterday,


Cars discharging exhaust gases

crossing waters to nuisance ice caps

for my Chinese relations.


Made in China Town,



Evie Kim Sing