Found Poem (letter from sponsored child in Vietnam)

The following is a word-for-word copy of a letter from a girl I have sponsored for years who lives in Quang Uyen, a little village up in the mountains somewhere in north Vietnam. I enjoy every letter I receive from here, but in this one I noticed that there was an interesting cadence which was simple, authentic, and reminded me a little of the kinds of rhythms we often find in translated Haiku and Tanka.
All I have done is try to bring forth music from the prose by inserting line breaks:

QUANG UYEN, DECEMBER 19, 2016

Please imagine
how delighted
I am
upon receiving
your letter.

The Cherry blossom
that you told me
must be
very beautiful.

It’s winter here
in my place
and the weather
is so cold
that there isn’t
any kind of flower
that can bloom.

I am
preparing
for my final
tests of semester
one,
so I study
harder
than usual.

I love sports
and drawing pictures.

I often
read books
at midday
to relax,
and I love
fairy tale comics.

Recently
I haven’t gone
fishing very often,
because
the water
is too cold
and there isn’t
a lot of fish.

Besides,
now I am
grown up and
can help my parents
more
with their work.

Please send
my best regards
to your mother.

I would
stop here
and wish you
good health
as well as
happiness for always!

Yours,

Ma Thi Ngan.

~

THE CLOAK OF ART (poem)

Sure, there’s worry,
there’s the inevitable fate
of pain, disfigurement
and withdrawal.

Then there’s
the weight of numbers
and of future shame to bear.

However, when I wear
this cloak of art,
to my mind’s eye
it’s all so beautifully
transformed.

Poverty becomes
a constrained palette.

Hunger becomes
sustenance.

Cold and discomfort
become chisel and hammer
with which to sculpt character.

Idleness becomes a delicacy
best consumed slowly
to inform the taste.

This cloak of art
is what Otis was wearing
on the dock of the bay.

You see,
it offers a different
kind of warmth,
not by keeping
the weather out,
but by inviting it
to focus one’s intent
on rubbing together
the sticks
of complex longing
and simple play
over the paltry kindling
of an audience
which is yet
to catch on.

~