The 2River View 19.1 (Fall 2014)

Jose Angel Araguz

The Hummingbird Between Us

The indecipherable tiny heart
of each moment between a man
and a woman, later father and mother,

later words on the page miles
from the river the mother crossed,
each breath taking flight, returning

to the air the father died in,
prison bars lining the last sky
like the paper the son beats

his hand across in ink and pressure,
from tongue to tongue, accent and stress,
the air keeps breaking, the river runs,

indecipherable, each blurred moment
on the wings of another—

La Llorona at the Café

She used to sit down and tell
stories about the river.
Her hands would shake.

Her cup and saucer made up
the background to her words.
She never spilt.

Once, she said: You can't hold
water in a fist.

We liked that,

so much, we kept repeating it
to one another,
missed when she left

the room, back to the river.
At night, we hear her shake.
Hear the girls

rattling dishes, the boys
stirring sugar around
in empty cups.

Jose Angel Araguz is the author of the chapbook Corpus Christi Octaves. He is presently pursuing a PhD at the University of Cincinnati, where he is a CantoMundo Fellow. blog

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