Saturday, July 22, 2017


Left in the closet,
hanging between my grandmother's tale and my rush to greet other faces
is my Thobe, a dress hand-stitched, with loss and love.

Not sorry

that I broke my hand reaching out for you
that I lost my tears for exchangeable gas, I couldn't help it
that I cannot feel the slightest remorse that one day you could have been
that grief does not take me over any longer, I cannot help it.

Shades of blue

What was Azure, you ask me
I point to the sky; it is summer and all clear
tell you this is how it reflects over water
the weather

you ask me further
how it makes me feel, this shadowing of sky and ocean
like a fairy-tale, I answer
a good start of one, at least

this is how we communicate
these days, on the sky, on colors
on a basic shade of the rift that was
where fish once swam between us

carried over-broken food for small finned daughters
how does it feel then, when the sky turns Celeste
another shade of the same blue?
like a gap is closing, a start of a fair-tale, a good one this time.

Beethoven, Havana Style

there's something like a late blessing in music
a tie, as if from a blue silk thread, weaving the heard 

the left behind. How do you play Beethoven, Havana style
Timba first, a flash of a dancer's rhythm in the steps 

you stop counting, falling as it may, 
the effect of the notes dropping in an empty studio 

but you are one blessed with a full heart and an explainable desire 
for listening to the noise of the city 

as it exhales at night, Havana, hub of the imagination 
this is it, then, how adventure gets written 

with a trumpet, with a soft beating of a drum 
no one can hear but an experienced night cat: a dancer 

tiptoeing on a melody, maybe this is all we are doing 
perhaps this is exactly what Beethoven would have sounded like 

having not been born with a pierced eardrum 
with stripped skin and less aptitude to genius

maybe a little drumming called the gods once 
will awake with the trumpets, a jazz at the edge of the night 

like swords clashing, like bodies fusing together 
in response to the late blessing of music.  

Friday, July 21, 2017

Short statements

I do not know, such a short statement
for a woman
who spent her life buried in books.


if what you give, automatically comes back to you
why then, do the clouds only give us rain?

we have been playing all our cards wrong
but keep receiving good, like packages right on our heads

if you hear someone call you in their distress, and you answer without screaming
why then is it that you receive a harsh conversation with a soft voice

not all of us know how to arrange our words best
for those who cannot take in the noise and our frenzy

if your song is not music to someone else's ears, maybe you have an ill-fitting voice
it is not you who should be held at fault with the misalignment of your notes

yet still, you can control the temper by which your force the notes
out of you, like stars lining the sky

if you go the distance but fail to arrive back on time
because the road was longer than your feet anticipated

allow yourself a break, the body gets worn out
like little rocks eroding with time

if you do it right, things come back to you
full circle

On the news, the streets of your city

On the news
the most familiar streets you've walked
the grocer's, the post-office, the place you fell when the school-girls laughed
the bookshop, its glass doors, it will all look different
with the same intensity, it becomes foreign

on the news, the most familiar streets in your city
become alien, when the tanks start moving in.

Canary song

Your voice matters
he tells me, this is why canaries are locked
they sing only to the nearest ears, out of the bars
can listen

Pandora's box

held the world's ills in her hands
a young woman without complaint, brushes
the blood out of his torn shirt, give her the name of a thousand
nightingales for she can stand to carry a weight so heavy
there is something about opening
the box, who knew how many demons could pass
through one human heart and leave it intact?

Ask Pandora if she dares answer,
tongue turned inward by fear or what was left unopened.

Breaking bad news

Why does the wait between the pebbles that line the street
seem so important, now that there is a secret in the chest?

insignificant details, it is true,
reasons why we lock secrets in our chest area to begin with 

is it because the heart is already in a cage?
isn't that enough already?

but this is the effect of waiting
it has its moments 

the insignificant details of uncertainty, 
like the number of cola caps found on the street when your head bows

in prayer as it does in fear
for there will be a tug, heavier than you when you sit 

between the certain and the uncertain 
aware that at a minute's request, it will condone, 

the fear of yours into minute pieces of information 
always delayed  at your risk and your order

this is why we delay the break of bad news
out of fear that good news will not be able to turn around the corner

to come find us when we least expect it. 

Mindless repition

How do we avoid mindless repetition?
asks gently
the echo.

the call of the free

Whatever freedom says
I answer her shortly
no one knows of the power left
in the pigeon's wing
after it was released from the knife at their edges

a July sunrise

July, is a tired eye,
wedding bands and reflections of lonesomeness in the mirror
the older you get, the easier it becomes for you to forget
how the steps change from a skip into a slow paced walk
there will always be time to think in the heat of summer
to leave feeling for the change of the season
the weather, the possibility, the end meeting of July

July is a tired eye,
that sleeps less and less in the dog days
but it is watchful eyes that scan the world first
like rays of sunshine hitting the roofs minutes after sunrise

The calendar, a reminder

On the wall
a calendar, besides from its clock sister
does not give mercy
you need reminding that your bones are getting colder.

The truth, saltwater

The truth, he told her
stings like saltwater washing over a wound
cleanses the pain away

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

in times of desolation

Locked are the gates of the city
ones only opened by God

those who pray outside the fortified castle
hear the screams of the sinners inside the walls

those who do not pray will not come to understand
that a revelation only comes if you kneel on hard stone

skin in the night, not glowing
prayers never soft or slow

locked are the dates of the city
ones only opened by God

try as you might, the faithful can hear the sinners
murmur under their breath, that only prayer works
in times of desolation, like these minutes.

refusal, by poetry

I refuse
the poetry by negation
it is what I have not, that keeps the things I have at hand

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Imagine the voices

As you sleep covering with the night
in the old house, stones borrowed, one after another
from the mountains that crumpled by invasive steps
like needles taken in a healthy body, for a double-check up measure
imagine the voices of those who carried, those who built
as you side with those who destroyed
know that my grandmother's back almost broke at eight years old
atop a mule riding to safety, while my grandfather, sixteen
rode the waves to the all-lit city to flee
so you can sleep safely, imagine the voices of those who died standing
were robbed a chance of sleep, where you now lay your head.

A state of mind

you discover it late, in your books
between the trinkets you collect as you go
it was apparent, yet lacking, like your middle name
a new way to smile, a different direction to your feet
a larger expectation of the sunshine on your face
freedom, is a state of mind

a traditional arrangement

Perfectly round, your ring
he places on your hand, 
you still don't know how to react to love 

do you pull away, or do your fingers interlace?

The photograph

On the living room's wall, your photograph, 
the day you graduated, well framed, twice the size of mine 
behind it I'm in pink on my day, 
mine is small and blurry, brother. 

Aphrodite's island, this night

born on the rock, off a cliff
it was not a dangerous labor to be born over water

to have earth and the cold sea
at your feet, yet still be beautiful
with a piercing heart

divided is this shore
that once belonged to her Aphrodite
cut out with an invisible thread that was once her hair

emulate good women,
this island sinks in olive groove, silence
the sea echoing a siren song that divides
makes whole the seashells.