Monday of unsayables. Of the misheard & the poorly
translated. Of saying milk & being given meal.
Of people encased in moving metal capsules vibrating
to music that leaks out their windows & hisses through
tires before the swerve. Monday of unknowables. Of terra-
cotta pots that crack in the yard from the heat, &
the man cutting grass mopping his forehead, apologizing,
saying he will replace them if you want. Monday of trees
whose arms have all been amputated, a deep V in the same
places to let the wires delivering electric current
pass unobstructed for miles. Two men on the bridge throw
a fishing line into the water and tent their fingers,
waiting. Wading birds shape their legs into bent
question marks & try to hold still. Monday of unsayables,
of the uncertain heart trawling the sludge for things
the mouth has always wanted to say but couldn't. Like pull
on this thread & see what little bit remains on the spool.
Like touch the sutured-up part to let out some of the pounding.
Like throw me back into the water with all the hundred other
bodies flickering, when you are done with the thrill
of catching & counting & adding another notch on the board.
Poet Luisa A. Igloria (website) is Co-Winner of the 2019 Crab Orchard Open Competition in Poetry for Maps for Migrants and Ghosts (Southern Illinois University Press, September 2020). She was appointed Poet Laureate of the Commonwealth of Virginia for 2020-22, and in 2021 received 1 of 23 Poet Laureate Fellowships from the Academy of American Poets and the Mellon Foundation. She 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; she also teaches classes at The Muse Writers’ Center in Norfolk. 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.