Open Studios This Weekend!

open studios

SLO County, California
10-5 Saturday Oct. 14 and Sunday Oct. 15
Acrylic paintings, Poetry, Portait and Walnut Pendants, Sculpture

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Fathoming You: A Poem for my Father

schooled

You
with an ocean in your arms-
my caption for an image that cannot
be captured, that is only beheld
with closed eyes.

I remember you overseas,
an imagined dot bobbing
beyond the stitches
and snowstorms and
eulogies and
wrapping
paper.

You would burst
through the front door,
reborn, with a suitcase of
offerings. Leagues began to unfold
before us on the floor just as another
wave was already drawing
you away.

After all these years
your voice remains a leviathan,
tangled inside the roaming forests.
So many of my words for you
flounder in a swarm of
sand and
salt.

But today
brings an offering.
When you call, I press an
ear to the receiver for echoes
of your open arms. They
carry me through
the tide.

Raising a Dream (in Shifts)

la frontera

-For all the DREAMers.

The Day Shift

Dawn is sitting
at my bedside. Alba.
Her name winks from a Motel 6
badge on her collar. She carries
piles of other people’s dirty
sheets under her eyes. I watch
them crinkle as she smiles.

¡Muy buenos días, mija!

She brushes the strands of
night from my face. Stores them
in a fat braid for later. Day
tiptoes in.

The countryside
sizzles and sings down
in our kitchen. Rancheros in
the pan, rancheras on the radio.

Qué linda está la mañana
en que vengo a saludarte…

Her voice is a honey that
smoothes out a.m. static
and warms the unfolding
words. They soak into
my mind and bloom.

Why must the sidewalk to
school languish like a desert?
There a snail has left its
shimmering trail of wishes
for a lush promised land.
Mami squeezes my hand
and whispers, I know he
made it. I leap over the
cracks, one border
after another.

The Night Shift

Papi is carrying a heavy dusk
under his nails, a midnight
soil. It eclipses those crescent
moons that rest inside my
palm. Back and forth, our
joined arms become a
metronome for the
steps we plunge into
the shadows
towards
home.

After dinner,
he resurrects a guitar
from its scruffy coffin.
He winces as he plucks
out the first chord.
It’s another stubborn row
of broccoli, cauliflower.
As more notes rise,
though, his eyes close.
His brow slackens.

Yo sé que no hay en el mundo,
amor como el que me das
Y sé que noche con noche,
va creciendo más y más…

I sip on a yawn, and begin
to drift off into the sound
hole behind the strings.
It is a window into an
unborn world.
It rings with
possibility.

exodus

exodus

We
cannot
escape
the desert.

She has shifty feet, she
is a hoarse diesel motor that
drags us along the inexorable road, the
promised land flicking its coyote tail
in front of our noses.

Virgen and saints alike cling
to our soggy chests as we worship
snapshots of mothers, wives, daughters.
For what are we but one half
of a circulating heart?

Even those of us who pass
the border -those who learn to
breathe fire or steal scant sips of
serendipity- walk with the weight
of her sand in our shoes.

And yet, the limping echo
in our blood still urges
us toward a new
home.