Poetry / September 2016 (Issue 33)


Birthplace

by B.B.P. Hosmillo

you've been here more than ninety times. your mother, after the migration
                                                and after the fire, stopped doing the math.
        how many years do we have to rename ourselves after all is infinite.
she cried whenever reminded
                 your birth was normal yet unnatural. it had no connection
to national womb, a fortune-teller everyone visits for privilege
                               or the laughing animal to be found in the word local.
                                she’d fall asleep remembering how not just once
     you tried convincing the soil to give birth to you, kissing it, repetitively
             since you had to develop intimacy with native culture
                                                              no matter how abrasive.
         you began the habit of saying my pain is no different.
               to a door that shut in your face. to a folksong that hurt its lyrics.
to the real fire that left you unrecognizable. did this qualify as a tragedy
                                                                                 or migrant story?
your mother soon left the house, the city. nobody will see her anywhere.
                                                             she had no place to go back to.
                     as a ghost you may get here again anytime, but don’t.
the country will write a long history, but will never dare to wake ashes.
                                                               nobody knows where to put you.
 
 
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