Santa Milagrita

Here’s a heart cut out like
a cookie made of tin, ringed

and pierced with holes: through
it, the light shines— like

ornament, like a bauble wrapped
in foil. Its cold fluted layers

gleam and pleat, like the halo
of a small town saint who’s made

good and come back to a hero’s
welcome: so many tokens at her

feet, so many supplicants in
parade. The traffic never stops

at her wayside shrine: bring me
back my lover, my daughter, my

mother, that life of promised
. Here, in exchange, all

these glittering anatomies:
fingers, arms, legs; an eye,

an ear— parts we would lop
off gladly; if only, if only.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Series Navigation← Song of SnowSong without Strings →

Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) is the winner of the 2015 Resurgence Prize (UK), the world’s first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. She is the author of What is Left of Wings, I Ask (2018 Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Prize, selected by Natasha Trethewey); Bright as Mirrors Left in the Grass (Kudzu House Press eChapbook selection for Spring 2015), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (Utah State University Press, 2014 May Swenson Prize), Night Willow (Phoenicia Publishing, 2014), The Saints of Streets (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2013), Juan Luna’s Revolver (2009 Ernest Sandeen Prize, University of Notre Dame Press), and nine other books. She is a member of the core faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University which she directed from 2009-2015. In 2018, she was the inaugural Glasgow Distinguished Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University. When she isn’t writing, reading, or teaching, she cooks with her family, knits, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.

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