The Metro’s Red Line to Hollywood at 7 in the morning
Caffeine and resilience
Hunched over on the metro’s seat
A young man slumbers in a drugged dream
The night still clings to him
The hours of oblivion
In the bowels of downtown
His pale, desolate face
Is the face of Che after the Bolivian jungle
He will sleep through many stops
Betrayal and movement
My friend Berta sold Cuban cigars on the black market
When we were students in San Diego.
She lives with Chango and Yemayá
Like some people live in the aura of celebrities.
She tells that in the 1980s Fidel Castro created flying chickens,
Genetically altered hybrids of a fish and a chicken.
They could fly from the rivers up into the trees.
And kept the Cuban people from starving.
Unrealizable ambition or grotesque madness?
Far from the tropics, we too feed on forgettable monsters.
I have imagined us meeting after all the years.
Our youth has passed, but there where it coincided,
It remains transfixed, fairy tale fashion,
Awaiting some impossible resolution.
Some day, perhaps soon, we will see each other again.
I will contemplate the intrusion of gray hair or a receding hairline,
The ghost of the beautiful boy I knew
Lingering in the last few years of handsomeness still left to you.
Your coy smile will be mirrored in mine,
It will rise from a past become irremediably alien,
Visited by who we are now.
Over the centuries they scattered witches, ogres, monstrous parents, princes, kings,
Depositing generations of children in the German forest
We have been hungry and abandoned
Recipients of kisses and the magic of death
And here we are
The cities and suburbs stretching before us
Glittering and dark, like the endlessness of forests