I tell you someone will remember us in the future— & through this insistence I mean remembering how we plunged our hands into a bath of acids, plucked hair & dirt off your faces and backs, scrubbed skin you could never get smooth in those hard to reach places. I mean remembering how we carefully folded tips, put them away in coffee tins for years under the sink; buttoned our coats to walk out again into the winter air to get to that second, that third job. In the hard shine of office chrome & clear glass, floors polished as though they could be brighter than the river moon; in the hours we croon or rock babies not our own—you never really see our faces. You don't want to remember what you so easily discard. You won't check the violence of your desire for war & always war. We won't cover up the blue marks, the holes you shot through these bodies, Still, we'll sieve the good silver light, we'll mop it up for someone to remember us in the future. They'll kiss our foreheads, our palms, before anointing our feet, scattering flowers as we go.
Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) was recently appointed Poet Laureate of the Commonwealth of Virginia (2020-2022). She 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 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.