Barrio With Sketchy Detail

Except for the chickens humming to each other,
making themselves look boneless in the dirt,
I want no memory of this place.

I will leave gingerly.
I will leave strung out.
I will leave rocking on my heels in unbearable heat.

the Mexican girls still faking and mourning Selena
from their perfect cement stoops,
not yet sworn to the anger hanging
from their papas' mouths like cigarettes.

I will leave stunned, from across the room.
I will leave by instinct, my tongue intact.
I will leave understanding it

was always coming, before that night, even
before we met. Marta will stand quiet, a glyph,
Pedro offer beer in cups. We'll sit.

When I leave, the sky will be a gouache of scratches,
the morning sluggish, a cactus flowering.
Or I will leave in blistered dark. It will still be true.

by Andrea Werblin

Comments (1)

This wonderful poem is actually the opening piece for Ms. Werblin's first collection of poetry entitled 'Lullaby For One Fist'. Although there is not a second collection available (another web site referenced a work in progress) , the following link to the Massachusetts Cultural Council shows 3 unpublished (to my knowledge) poems from both 2002 and 2003. http: // The promise of this poet is seen in the work entitled 'Please Excuse Me'. If this wonderful piece is any indication of the growth of this poet we can only hope that Ms Werblin gets the opportunity to publish more of her works soon.