Home Remedies

Afternoon of pig blood and goat bleat,
of vapors from a camphor pot. When illness

swoops down from the rafters, bat-winged,
blind, bumping into everything in its path.

There is no justice in the universe that eats
one cake and leaves the other to ferment

on its offering plate. Or there is justice
because that is just the way it happens.

There is no kapre, no gaunt wraith in the trees,
monstrous with its folded knees and pleated

leather skin. Or there is always something
smoking its slow cigar through the years,

best at waiting. We only see wisps of fog, hear
the ones in their sick beds asking for poultices,

cracked ice, one last slice from the heart
of fruit before it molders and liquefies.

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