A ring, quietly stays on mom's little finger, passing down a tale of frugal living I wonder: how could it be told once and again without making us feel bored? 一跤手指 恬恬掛佇 阿母的䆀指(bái-tsáinn)，流傳 儉腸凹肚的故事 安怎，逐擺 猶原講袂𤺪（siān）？ Painful but eager, when seeing her babies come down with illness, she did blanket searches everywhere. Knocking on every door of clinic at midnights, she apologized for her rudeness by showing courtesy. 毋甘子兒辛苦病痛 四界走傱 (tsáu-tsông) 急症挵(long)先生門 失禮頭犁犁 Living on a tight budget, she compensated the big expenses for meals by knitting sweaters, one piece after another. When grandma came back home with tons of Logan in big baskets, her children jostling and shoving fought for their way to get a bite. Eventually, the chaos was settled down by announcing the prize of victory. The winner was granted access to the fruit, rejoiced over a mouthful of sweetness. 手頭誠絚（ân）的時陣 膨紗衫一領一領刺 補貼一家的飯頓 阿公載返來 規籠的龍眼，序大歡喜 囡仔相爭食甲滿喙填 Saving up every penny and cent, she worked very hard in case of rainy days. The most extravagant items all handed down to her babies, without uttering any complaints, she was the one who suffered from all the hardship. 一仙五銀 打拼賰(tshun)落來 毋驚樹尾做風颱 奢颺的物件只留乎 阮兜的心肝 家己去叫苦 *The Original Taiwanese Poem entitled “Granny’s Bequeathal” was published in Issue 24 (the final issue, out of print) of Chinese modern poetry Quarterly, February 2020. 台語詩原作，刊登於2020年2月出版之華語現代詩季刊第24期
Granny’s Bequeathal / 〈阿嬤的手尾〉陳意榕
Yi Jung (Jolene) Chen
What is the significance of the piece to you?
The significance of the piece is that it is written in memory of my beloved granny, who passed away about 19 years ago. She had raised me up until I was six years old. I really miss her.
What is the significance of the form?
The significance of the form is that it was originally written in the form of Taiwanese language. It is a dialect that we speak often at home. My granny is an expert in using Taiwanese slangs and singing Taiwanese folk songs, which are commonly seen in Taiwanese poems from time to time. To sum up, Taiwanese poems can be deemed as one of the most precious and valuable culture heritages that we should pass down to our next generation.
What was your process for creating this piece?
The process of creating this piece involved a nostalgic feeling toward the good old times and I would like to pay tribute to the hardship my ancestors had been through to blaze a trail for us as well. In brief, motivations came first and then the enlightenment from the narratives told by my granny and mom unfolded the story within the poem.
Besides teaching pupils of learning difficulties at Dounan Elementary School of Taiwan, Yi Jung (Jolene) Chen used to write scripts for illustrated picture books and poems in English, Chinese and Taiwanese language as well. Provided given the opportunity, she would like to have her poems published by reliable journals and shares her with people around the globe.