1. Le Déjeuner sur l’herbe

    Who ordered rain? Who ordered tea?
    Order ham and croissants, bubbly with cheese.
    Order sheets of fondant. Practice French.
    Say *tuileries*, say *pamplemousse*.
    Tuck your hair behind your ear, pick up
    your fork, don your bib. Pick up the hot
    crust with your fingers. Don’t eat like a bird.
    Don’t you love ribs? Hand me a plum.
    What’s that wrapped in paper?
    Who heard? The leaves are buzzing
    with news of the world.

    ~ Luisa A. Igloria
    04 19 2011


    Ahhh…so much mirth with the greening earth,
    so I ordered more rain for the plains of Spain!
    Perplexed yet with this morning’s menu?
    Hail, rain, sleet, sunshine, winter remnants
    are of no moment when I sip my minted tea.

    I tap my fingers with the rooftop staccato,
    dip my biscuit not once but thrice with brio.
    That done, I slide my anteojos gafas down
    my schoolmarmish nose to read the paper
    rolled like a salami on my morning table.

    Unfurled, my gazette of daily mayhem
    confirms the slaughter of yet more lads
    and lasses in the name of country and god,
    of yet more hungry children orphaned
    in lands where force majeure trumps
    the rule of nature and law, where hurt
    and pain are never ever granted furlough.

    “Aiee, Dios mio,” I sigh quickly, and drink
    my tea before it gets cold. Birds steal
    my biscuits, but like the windblasted trees,
    I droop and execute my dotard shrug.

    —Albert B. Casuga

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