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Ahora

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I
Oracular, binocular and what can you see?
—brown metal silhouette of a bull on a hill
on the hill the broken _ahora_
Today across the top of the temple
sound of stone boots
then comes the red animal god
adoration occurring a few km under ground
In the deep canyon below the volcano
little black ribbons of water come and go
I will learn to read by the light of poinsettias
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II
If I ever get to sleep
If I ever get to sleep on the Aeromexico flight
with the joyous Mexican families returning to Tijuana
and the pink-skinned gringos en route to gringolandia
and the luggage lost two weeks
and the xylophone duet in the _zocalo_
headache from the altitude, not the fifth
bottle of Sangre de Toro
Below, navy blue mountains and serge plains,
convolutions resembling the images of brains
and down the aisle dispersing peanuts and _lo que queremos_
_para bebir_ come the Mexican goddesses
cunningly disguised as stewardesses
serpents coiled in their braids
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III
My Mexico City is filled with unusable red:
hidden beneath Frida’s cobalt walls
in the shade of _Casuarina_ trees
in a hot humming ball in the lower left
of Siqueiros’ mural in the _Castillo_
crimson to earth
carnation to smoke
lily to dust
luminous crystal to nothingness
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fn0. _Arc_ 56, Summer 2006
see issue for full poem in 12 parts