The Hieroglyphical Origin of My Identity
By Changming Yuan

To begin with
ā€˜Iā€™ was no body
But a common reed
Bowing its head to the rising sun
On the barren bank of the Nile

Slim, tall, hollow-hearted
Standing against tropical heat
Until one day I was used
As a human symbol, an open vowel
Referring to the speaker
And since then I have become
One of the most frequently used letters
In the linguistic order of the day
Always capitalized
To embody my dignity
Though I am nothing
But a common reed
That could have been made into a flute
To begin with