Tuesday March 15, 2011

Sun glimmers through thin clouds, the ground is hazy with frost, and me trying to blink the sleep from my eyes. A nuthatch’s anxious call.

4 Comments


  1. Sun glimmers through thin clouds
    I hear an anxious bird call
    and suddenly I think I’m Moses after all,
    not Aaron:

    the day after, sitting alone on the ground
    trying to fit broken stones together.
    It seemed
    like a good idea at the time.


  2. After

    Evening of the first day, the man who owned a truck yard
    next door laid out plywood sheets on hard ground and said

    *Come*– And all the neighbors came, bringing blankets,
    sheets, canvas tarp, burlap– The very young and the trembling

    old slept in vehicles, windows cracked open for air–
    And the night air was notched with metallic smells but also

    something almost sweet, like flowers– I did not want
    to think what kind– And the following day it rained,

    and then again the next, so between aftershocks we collected
    water in pails and tin drums– Someone had a kerosene stove

    and lit it in the shadow of the broken shed where the honeysuckle
    vines were a vivid green interspersed with orange– And still

    we refused to go indoors, though gradually we crept
    back to those parts of our homes still standing– Porches

    were good for sleeping– When the sun glimmered
    through thin clouds we heard news of a few places

    where we could walk to line up for bread, rice,
    canned goods– And someone had busted a water pipe

    near the park (just a little they said) and people lined up
    with cans and plastic tubs to fetch water– And the men

    had come back from digging out bodies from collapsed
    buildings, from vehicles overtaken by land-slides

    on the mountain road– And strangers offered
    rides, and helicopters hovered in the sky– And we heard

    lamentations and questions on the lips of everyone–
    Faces streaked often and easily, blinking not

    from the sunlight but from what they could barely endure–

    ~ Luisa A. Igloria
    03 15 2011



  3. This is the revised version of the poem —

    After

    Evening of the first day, the man who owned a truck yard
    next door laid out plywood sheets on hard ground and said

    *Come*— And all the neighbors came, bringing blankets,
    sheets, canvas tarp, burlap— The very young and the trembling

    old slept in vehicles, windows cracked open for air—
    And the night air was notched with metallic smells but also

    something almost sweet, like flowers— I did not want
    to think what kind— And the following day it rained,

    and then again the next, so between aftershocks we collected
    water in pails and tin drums— Someone had a kerosene stove

    and lit it in the shadow of the broken shed where the honeysuckle
    vines were a vivid green interspersed with orange— And still

    we refused to go indoors, though gradually we crept
    back to those parts of our homes still standing— Porches

    were good for sleeping— When the sun glimmered
    through thin clouds we heard news of a few places

    where we could walk to line up for bread, rice,
    canned goods— And someone had busted a water pipe

    near the park (just a little they said) and people went
    with cans and plastic tubs for water— And the men

    came back weeping, having dug out bodies from collapsed
    buildings, from buses and cars overtaken by landslides

    on the mountain road— And strangers offered
    rides, and helicopters hovered in the sky— And we heard

    lamentations and questions on the lips of everyone— Faces
    streaked often and easily, eyes filling with tears and blinking

    not from the sunlight but from what they could barely endure—

    —Luisa A. Igloria
    03 15 2011

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