Thursday, May 3, 2012

Gates of Fire

You don’t come back whole
from Mexico.
No more than from Venice.
Beware, Gus
Once you cross the border
where underwater
the signs point down,
take a big breath
to accrue the days
left before the wreath
follows you into fire.
At Tijuana, Nogales, Juarez,
the sun is mostly fire.
Only I am free
when Cathleen does to me
what women do
in Mexico
to wean a lover
from pulque,
to save the worm
at the bottom
of the bottle . . .
She motions, Come.
she was pimped in her youth.
What they teach first
and last:
you work on your knees
more than on your back . . .
and coming back
you pray you know the truth.
Out here
the border
is a gate closing
where it once opened.

(24 April, 3 May 2012)

copyright 2012 by Floyce Alexander

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