Barbara Jane Reyes – 2 Poems

Barbara Jane Reyes

2 Poems


for england hidalgo

he painted it on the floor, feed your fucking dogs!  that’s what it said.  i swear to god.  it’s those short-haired
ones, whose lines of muscle make them look like bad men, and demons, ears cropped to eliminate the usual
you-are-my-friend floppiness, the throw-it-and-i’ll-fetch-it-for-ya thing we all love to awww over, autonomic
response like.  feed your fucking dogs and i’m drooling a so-sensory-overloaded-i-can’t-help-but-squeal
drool, the usual i-need-to-write-a-poem-NOW-or-i’ll-die drool.  this is a poem for the old woman who fills her
grocery cart with baby food jars, strained peas, rice cereal, applesauce with no added sugars for her cute as
a button baby lapdog.  i can only imagine a little moist-nosed papillion poised waiting in the air-conditioned,
old white lady car.  punyetang mga aso is the moral of this story; maraming taong nagugutom and this
fucking old lady and her putang inang aso… well, yeah.

Going outside to find the sky

It is much higher at high noon, and I have to stand on my tiptoes to touch it with the tips of my straining
fingers.  In Chinatown, firecrackers jumping in sunlight like glinting pistols tell me it is time for old ghosts to
rest.  The boy version of me once said he would ride a carabao cross country because only I know where to
place the “h” in him.  I am still waiting for his poem to tell me he is on his way, closer to the Pacific’s salty
embracing roar.  I will allow myself a moment of susceptivity and remember a time when I collected pretty
rocks and felt them clicking against one another in my pockets as I skipped barefoot into the ocean’s froth
like soda fountain root beer floats.  Today I sit with knees together, swinging my legs to and fro.  Today I’ll
hum a little song, and maybe I’ll be out of tune.

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