- after "El Viento Inquieto," Armando Valero No one could deny the wind had been restless, spreading its rumors among all who would listen. It touched everything— cigarette wrappers on the ground, discarded cup sleeves, loose siding. Perhaps its biggest hunger was to itself be touched. But think of every picture you've ever seen where a figure in robes or somber uniform, assigned some official duty, fails to keep his eye on the horizon or his face unmoved— Perhaps a boy in the crowd wanted to tug at the buttons of his coat; perhaps his bladder filled, like a brass goblet the sun suddenly conspired to tip over on the cobblestones. Perhaps the wind brought urgent warning of thousands coming down the avenue, breaching security, battering down the Capitol doors. At any moment, someone would ram a flagpole into his chest, douse people and barricades with gasoline. Anything might happen to be in its path, to which a match could be lit; to see what kind of flame a frenzied wind could fan higher.
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.