, , , ,

Photo by Emmanuel Dizon


In the tropics where you live

on the edge of the jungle

where the trees and vines and thickets

shoulder the road

With its dusty trucks,

the people teeming

with their baskets and wood smoke and fruit

their nasal clack of chatter

and fresh-caught fish gleaming

And inside the house

The smell of earth and banana leaf

The sound of rooster and dogs and karaoke machine

The nick of mosquitos, the fan seeming

to turn its head to listen as it blows

I open my eyes

to her singing

as she presses fresh citrus in a glass

puts bread on a platter

pulls the hot chocolate from the fire

cuts mango to size.

In the tropics through bamboo slats beaming

The sun

marks my face

and wakes me to realize

I was dreaming.

— Louella Dizon San Juan