Queen of Spades

we owned a t.v. 

but mostly 

it was for soccer,

no cartoons,

unless it was Heidi 

and her grandfather 

in the Swiss Alps/

translated into Spanish—

In the tropics, snow is a beautiful illusion

& poverty comes in all climates, 

so does war, 

love and loss/

no amount of supplies 

or batteries 

stops the hail from beating against my cheeks/

I open my mouth, 

a statue, 

open for Heavenly nourishment,

cloud candy/

I am allergic to  things that exist in nature and others 

that should’ve never been manufactured to be consumed:

dander

pollen

gluten

dairy

men

women

my little girl tantrums

I am guilty of all the things that have happened to me after the age of 30—

I knew exactly what I was doing, because 30 means adult and 90 means corpse/

I am at a halfway point, almost—and I am in constant worry about what part of my body will fail first?/

my heart has been the weakest, 

but most resilient/

my ankles are stilts, 

and I am the clown in charge of smiles 

I have watched plants bloom under my care and die under my neglect,

this is true of everything and everyone that reaches deep into my roots/

contact

with the 

apple of my tree

leaves many punctured

 and 

too many become tolerant/

TEMPTED IN EVERY RESPECT

Here—let me romanticize this life for you

WARNING: IMPURITIES IN THE WATER ARE NORMAL IN LOS ANGELES

Makes us resilient—robust

gives us wings

that’s how you can tell us apart

if you’re real 

we’re spread eagled

floating in our weather worn existence

No amount of sirens 

help drown out the helicopters

I am jealous of the foods you eat and I cannot

BREAKING NEWS: Ebola death toll climbs above 2,000

Meanwhile, I complain about the allergies caused by my air-conditioning unit

WARNING: OUTBREAK OF SEVERE LUNG DISEASE FROM E-CIGARETTES

243 days ago 

my hands and feet went numb

nightmares of smoking 3 packs a day

made my teeth fall out

I grew a third breast, 

my tongue evaporated

There’s evidence of the heavy exodus,

somewhere on my iPhone 7

it can destroy the ability

I spent my whole life contemplating a name for myself.

I was called all kinds of things:

Puta.

Hija.

Hermana.

Fat.

Ugly.

Whore.

Worthless.

Beautiful.

Angel.

Holy.

I answered to them all, 

mostly because 

I never wanted to get lost.

Recognition was vital, 

blood—

I’d lose pints of it monthly, 

I had to replenish

In my more generous years, 

when I needed concert tickets or a free pass to the museum—

I’d give my blood to whatever mobile clinic took it,

iron-deficient, still, not denied—

New Years of 2014—

numb & nauseous—

a half raw steak in my mouth 

I almost forgot my name

…but I heard it as I faded into the festivities,

Ingrid

Ingrid

Ingrid

please,

this year has left me so tired, 

/vacant

/bare

/devoid of

/bankrupt

please

just say goodnight 

forget my name…

/let me sleep into the new year—“

Military planes in the sky in Los Angeles on September 16th, at 12:11 p.m.

Did I ever leave home?

Yes, 

but this city is a mirror of what I left.

Except, 

I don’t speak the same language anymore/but at the same time I speak the very same language/

it’s laughter.

I don’t feel like my traumas have animated my life/ 

I don’t even like to call them traumas

I prefer calling them, ‘stolen property’

and I’m capable

of stealing it back/

a wild woman shows up in many guises

don’t punish me for broken glass,

a child breaks many things and you have surely

had your heart broken, and survived/

a shard doesn’t glimmer, 

it punctures tires and turns to smaller fragments of itself,

no refracting/

just remnants of what it was and yet, 

nothing changes…

no morsel in my mouth, 

no ash, 

no violence/

you kiss me and forgive 

the shrapnel i’ve dislodged

—and thank goodness

How many inches have I grown since I met you?

I’ve expanded at the hips and the heart.

I’ve let go of my demons, and invited new ones.

But do you know what love is?

Can you calculate the formula without mathematics?

It is not the size of his cock or his lies.

It is not you, falling victim to yourself.

It is not me pretending that I am who I say I am.

It is me sharing the core of you and the core of me with the core of we.

But do you know what love is?

It isn’t fucking or fighting or fucking after fighting.

It ain’t you looking good,

and him telling so.

It is not the toothpaste in the sink or the broken fingers

It is everything you are willing to let go, to make room…

There will be traditions.

you’ll forget some 

and cherish others.

You will love the scent of his breath 

and the stink of his feet.

It will remind you of decay, 

and you will spiral into death anxiety and calm it with your wedding song.

No amount of deafening traffic at midnight could wake us up after we fall into each other.

Downtown from our window is a celebration,

birthday candles on the horizon.


against the silence

According to some 

I have a nice mouth, deep eyes, good legs—a nice voice—nice hair

My veins are full of shit 

and gold intermixed, 

they rot and make me rich 

on the great verge of recognition, 

one tastes the years 

on the surface of the tongue

i scrape at its antiquity

taste the many corpses

my throat/ a trunk for all the things i carry but don’t need

my wrists/ the flames that require gasoline

my eyes/ the only source of water in this wildfire

i cry you nourished/ watch ghosts evaporate