Dear father, I still remember most things
I was taught as a child: that leaves pressed
between the pages of a book can sometimes keep
a little of their green, that veins are blue
only because of the way light illuminates skin.
I know the language of a power of attorney,
which is meant to designate to another or others
the things one is for some reason unable to do.
Matters of belief are a different question: and you
were of a generation that didn't draw up wills
for fear that doing so would hasten their death.
I no longer cross myself before leaving home,
though I'll retreat into a nave of quiet where a voice
only I can hear prostrates itself on the floor.
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 former US Poet Laureate 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.