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Posts Tagged ‘spanish’

Thoughts on Travel

There was that time I went to Thailand on a whim,

I went to Dublin and to Prague and to Madrid.

I wanted to drink Guinness in a pub and then to swim

in the Irish Sea (I failed), but what I did

was to drink vermouth in Granada and furthermore

I toured Alhambra, saw the Prado and

consumed more Rioja than is wise. I swore

that I would dance in Spanish sand

eat paella, drink Cava, learn to speak

the way the Spanish do, with heart and tongue,

but instead I learned to cry and turn a cheek

to the lash of idioms. Oh, I was young,

don’t judge me as you do, I had my fun

but now such days are through.

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Letter to Myself, 17

Look up. Do not put your head down

on the desk. Whatever he asks, say No. When he calls

on you in class, say No. The same word in English or Spanish.

When you see his pregnant wife on the porch, do not look

away as if you have chosen. Walk right up to her

and say, Your husband is an asshole. When he calls you,

do not answer. When he comes by and leaves notes

on your door, erase them, as you have always done.

Do not shed a tear. Look at your friends gathered around you,

stones that could remove teeth, and remember whose skin

is whose. The next time he calls, tell him about the taste

of poison. Go to his boss and say I just wanted

to learn the past perfect. Listen: I have lived this a thousand times

and it will not end nicely. Que sera, sera.

Years later, when he comes into the bakery, do not smile.

Look at his child and say, so you still lie to your wife?

Tell him, no, No, you may not have a fucking Mazurka bar,

and yell out, look everyone, it’s the guy who thought

he could teach me Spanish.

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