Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsFall 2022  Vol. 21  No. 2
an online journal of literature and the arts
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translation from Spanish by David M. Brunson

A Poem Called Country

It’s more than just leaving
and saying goodbye to hunger on the street corners
It’s hearing strange words
in your own language
It’s explaining the misery that tans your skin
and floods your gaze
It’s defending the dignity
of your seven-starred tattoo
It’s true
Leaving means letting pieces
of yourself go
on without you
They wander on foot
through streets they cannot drive
You leave carrying everyone’s
hunger on your back
and every bite aches
through the nothingness
that you bring to your mouth
You search for any flavor
that might fill so much emptiness
This is how we go
This is how we’re broken
as we leave in trains
that will never arrive home  

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