Poetry / August 2009 (Issue 8)

Two Poems

by Luisa A. Igloria

Reptilian Chant #2

As a child I swung in a hammock
beneath two breasts. As a child
I leaned on the back of my father.

As a child I learned
the names for mother.

Then I sought the arms of desire.
Then I fled the roof and the floor's crust
of burned rice.

I hung my skirts on the doorpost.
I filled a gourd with water.
I walked in the direction of the sun.

(This poem is inspired by Amy Cheng's painting "The God Approaches"; Amy Cheng and Luisa Igloria began an informal painting-poetry collaboration after they met at a Ragdale Foundation residency two years ago.)

Who Is The Mother

of the severed
hibiscus heads
the children

pounded to a pulp
on the sidewalk,
those hot summers
when water
and dishwashing
were simply
not enough
for the bubbles
they desired?
lifting too
quickly away,
waving goodbye
and goodbye.
(This poem is inspired by Amy Cheng's painting "A Baiana Ana".)  
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