After Rita Dove's image
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Testament Scratched into a Water Station Barrel (Partial Translation)

After Rita Dove

Apá, dying is boring. To pass las horas,

I carve

our last name

all over my body.

I try to recall the taste of Pablo’s sweat.

Whiskey, no.

Wet dirt, sí.

I stuff English

into my mouth, spit out chingaderas.

Have it your way.

Home of the Whopper.


for the border. ¡Aguas! The mirror

betrayed us.

It erased your face

from my face.

Gave me mother’s smile, narrow nariz.

Once, I wore

her necklace.

The gold slick,

obscene. God, I was beautiful.

Cada noche,

I sleep

with dead men.

The coyote was the third to die.

Your money

is still in his wallet.

Quien engaña

no gana. Apá, there’s a foto, in my bolsillo,

of a skeleton


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