I don’t comb my hair 

or paint my waif face 

or clothe my scant body 

in matching colors. 


Who sees them now? 


I do care for this body 

I wash it, and oil it for comfort, 

eat seeds and nuts 

and greens. 


For it contains my words 

That I still send, more fervently 

than ever to those 

I love. 


And to those 

who’ll never see 

This waif face, this 

uncombed hair. 


I care for these rooms that I’ve 

made pleasant, these cuttings 

in the window I hover over  

Like nurslings.    


Scrub this kitchen where cockroaches come out at night 

to celebrate crumbs on the counter, 

an unwashed cup in the sink, 

Scatter at the light. 


Dust these bookshelves where 

I preserve a few books printed in cuarto edition 

whose creamy pages I sliced open years ago, to discover 

a language, 


This bronze cook pot so old 

its bottom was made rounded 

to nestle in embers… 



And on the walls 

this wooden chocolate beater 

carved by hand and purchased in a market 

for centavos. 


This weaving of a monkey 

with a triangular green face, 

this linocut 

a friend… 


For these rooms contain 

this scant body now, 

which contains 

these words. 


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