Feb 12


Airports feel like slipping
beneath security lines and
constantly losing purchase on people.

Darting over connected seats to glass windows,
everywhere is somewhere to watch you leave.

Finding which plane to track
gets difficult as
horizons blur
into shapes of you.

Just another few years to
kill waiting for you in the
lobby of departures.

Maybe next time you’ll get me a
new apology from the airport gift shop. I keep the last
one with me at night
pretending I’m still the child you bought it for. Sometimes I
question if you
remember me.

Sometimes I question if I lost you in
the sky or if it was on the
underground train to terminal C. I don’t remember
very well. But I can’t seem to forget

why we say goodbye in front of the full body
x-ray machine. I always hope the security line is long because
Feb 12


When I walk into a bakery in the
Mexican neighborhood of Philly
where the menu is written in my first tongue
I am so visible that I shine
bright white and the forty-something cashier
switches to rough English when she checks me out.

If I greet her in Spanish she might tilt her head
and rake her eyes up and down my body
like it is something foreign.
Like we weren’t made from the same wool.

It’s my fault
I knit my pale blanket so closely
around my skin and teeth that
my voice only dances in one language,
and for a rare time, I am silent.
Nov 14

Fragments 2

Fragments are all I have left of him.
Faded photographs in porcelain blue boxes shoved under my bed,
saved voicemails,
a letter in bright blue ink.

He left before I could articulate I needed him,
toddler hands grasping his shirt at the airport.
I waited-
seven hours and thirty-eight minutes.

I replayed the few memories of him over and over:
A thunderstorm in Puebla, the rain pelting the roof,
the way the lightning,
stabbing at intervals,
arched across the sky.

His laugh, rippling across the living room.

A birthday party, three candles on a sagging cake.

My awe visiting the ruins at Cacaxtla,
how he sat me on his shoulders so I could see,
stacked rock that used to be homes,
desperate etchings on the walls
spelling out a story I had yet to read.

These home movies flickered against my eyelids
before I fell asleep,
Jul 26

i chose money over my father and i don't regret it

because of what I bought.

love is a currancy i hesitate to spend.

i have $483 dollars of non-refundable
deposits of memories.
deflation is inevitable.

my love was only worth
5 calls
an email.

they taught me macro-econmics in school
but i think he only learned

he was expensive.

love was the only payment i knew before
he started asking for another.

dirty money

that's what he threw at me.

anything to keep me buying.

my debit cards have a limit
and i think he found mine.

i chose money over my father and i don't regret it
because i spent it on my

i chose money over my father

and i am 

all the richer now.
Jun 24
poem 5 comments challenge: General


I want my mother
at night.
When my body catches up with my mind
and my face unfolds from sleep so I can
remember every detail of the dream that woke me.

I want my mother
at night.
When I stumble from my raised bed to hers
two rooms down and to the left.
Her covers are better,
her arms warmer,
her breath reassuring.

I want my mother
at night.
When I lose my first tooth
and I don't know if the fairy will come
because I might have put it under my pillow too late.

I want my mother
at night.
When she keeps the light on in her room
while she reads the bills until the morning.

I want my mother 
at night.
When the shouting reverberates in my ears,
about how what we have is not enough
How the crops are nothing compared to NAFTA.

I want my mother
at night.
When the days are getting longer
Jun 06

Again & Again

May 31


poor puebla princess
is dripping in gringa
on the flight back from burlington,
and her cousins rub their palms on her skin
wondering if it might spread.

parched puebla princess
is thirsty for the time of day when the sun can burn 
her incombustible skin.
the sun on the other side was too fragile, 

petulant puebla princess
wants to leave the stifling kitchen,
sick of peeling mangoes by the blue tile sink
while her father can roam

polite puebla princess
lets her eyes glaze over
when people ask her how
much she loves being
such a proper girl.

pale puebla princess
pretends she's sick in america
so she doesn't have to play with the friendly neighbor
that likes to tug her hair and ask why
she's so tan in the winter.

proud puebla princess
hates the boy in america that 
glares every time she speaks spanish,
May 25
poem 0 comments challenge: General

Nos Faltan 43

Blood summers in the deep parts of mexico
are the reason I only visit in the spring.
They call them blood summers
because of how the air gets thick
and how the children get stolen.

I can either write or they can bleed
with the fragile heartbeats they have left.
Pain has always taken us for weak
and I am weak
so I write.

Sometimes they take them from school,
or from home, or from their father's arms.
And everyone is alone because
they don't get amber alerts.
Just death ones.

I can either write or they can cry
with leaking eyes we have yet to see with.
Memories gathered in the corners
dripping down our cheeks until we feel lonely
and I am lonely
so I write.

Have you seen the marches?
The charred paper with the faces etched in?
The billboards clustered on the highway?
The way they don't let go of their children?
May 23


May 18

Fun & Games

May 03


Mar 23
poem 2 comments challenge: General


I forgot to add iodine to the vegetables the other day.

That’s why you found broccoli in the garbage.

I drank water from the tap once and didn’t get sick.

I drank water from the tap again, and I did.

I know you don’t earn a lot of money.

I hate the feeling I get when you try to hide it.

I think dad left because you told him to.

I think you told him to leave because he was going to anyway.

I spent the last dollar on a necklace I really wanted at the store.

I don’t pray before we eat.

I know you don’t either.

I hate it when the neighbor tells me I hit like a girl.

I was the reason he had a black eye and they don’t invite me over anymore.

I never hit anyone else after that,
with my fists.

I think the door needs to be oiled.

I know when you get home late because of the sound.

I’ll never drink.
Mar 21

A Vermont Winter

She came to the United States when she was just young enough
to question why everything was white.
They thought she was talking about the snow
but her mother knew she was talking about the people.

When the water froze and assembled
into a compacted glaze on the sidewalks,
she slipped more than other kids.

They told her it was because of black ice,
that it was transparent and deadly.
Like them.

The air wouldn’t even let her speak.
Numbing her throat with icicles
so she had to abandon her words,
in order to breathe.

She knew that people here were colder
and that they wondered why she didn’t blend into the snow
like they did.

She fears that leaving people is a sickness
that spreads from father to daughter
because it feels like she has a fever
and she’s gelid all the time now.

She really wants to leave,
Mar 18


Puebla is chocolate dipped, syrupy
as I spoon it out of the close knit towns surrounding Mexico City.
I just want to gulp it down,
suck the marrow from the cattle that get leaner every year.

It smells good, being home.
Or being in a place that was once home.
I can’t help but hold my breath,
abducting it in my lungs as if the wind here
is a different flavor then the wind there.

I thought the thing I missed most was the heat,
the sizzle your bare feet make against
the packed dirt of the evening road.
But I was wrong because I am intoxicated by
the way my grandma clasps my hands to her heart,
like I never left.

Puebla tastes salty,
as I lick it from my top lip,
brushing it from the corners of my eyes,
letting it fall, absorb into my skin.

I know I can’t come back until the next
thunderstorm season.
The lightning hides my guilt on the tarmac,
Mar 13

Something Red

The perspective of the shooter is not to sympathize or diminish any of what he did, but rather to shed light on how easy it is to get a gun even if you are obviously unfit to have one.

“Here, just take my money!” he interrupts
before haphazardly grabbing the pistol.
Unclenching his fist to let the crumpled money fall.
He leaves his friend with half a lemonade
and no reasoning for the purchase.

He didn’t really want to pay for it,
he doesn’t like to spend money,
especially when it’s going to dumb people
but it was the easiest option and he
wants this to be easy.


Helena wished math could be easier.
or maybe just less boring
but she still wanted something
as she dropped her head between her hands
and waited for the bell to ring.


He made the bell ring,
but not the one they were expecting.
He took out his new gun.