Saturday, April 10


Do you know the resurrection plant? The false rose of Jericho found tightly wrapped
into a ball that looks like string? They sell them at the side of El Camino Real
next to the corn dolls that look like blank bisque pottery, like my tía in stage makeup
and the lime-green ribbons for folklórico at the bright sunset of each month, skirts whirling, 
eternally crowned with the huge white silk dahlias she loved

as big around your palm that dwarfed the saucers at the cafe I used to haunt. My sun
still rose and set on you, and the afterimage of that dizzying light tasted like the slow
burn of your smile, discretion darker than a summer midnight, sweeter than cafecito 
pouring thick into a paper cup on a counter along the busy Miami streets where
we have never walked together. Not yet.

I do not talk about the drums echoing wildly through the brilliant desert night,
some days I cannot speak at all--but how long can one false rose stay curled
so tightly in on itself that it could be mistaken for something long dead? 
Even in a city of sand and glass, the rain can roll in, thirst can be quenched,
time retrieved from drought's grasping hand.

I rise again and again from my own ashes at your whispered invocation,
the walls I built around my heart spun from moonlight and flax that shiver at a touch,
the green radiating outward, relieving the strain, relaxing each limb.

And Abuelita said: I chose this name because I wanted you to heal,
like tatarabuela, I wanted you to touch the wretched stones that 
rise in each of us and set them to rest the way your eyes dissolved my
aching bones in joy when you laughed at your own birth.

I've always preferred marigolds and the Moon, so I never bought one,
never brought any of them home to rest while
I gently pour water into a hard-baked terracotta dish so I could watch
it unfurl and bless us with so many beginnings.