Honras a los muertos

Cypress tree, honeysuckle, 
tarp spread over the corner 
store. Old women with lit 
ends of cigarillos in 
their mouths. Men 
rolling dice in a cup, 
swigging fire water with 
no ice. Someone flips 
a side of meat on a charcoal 
grill; two cuts to lay on a plate
on the casket's glass, for
there is eating and drinking
in the world of the dead. 
Someone shakes drops of gin
on the ground and claps 
like a bridegroom signaling
to start the dance. 
This will go on for days,
for what is elegy but
the muffled sound of marching
along the old road that goes
down to the sea: no one
left to look out of windows,
willow fronds quiet until
the mourners start singing. 
  


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