is the author of two award-winning books of poetry, Lucky Wreck
and This Big Fake World
. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker
, Diode, Iowa Review
, and others. Her third book, Sharks in the Rivers
is forthcoming from Milkweed Editions.
The Weather Reported
I’m glad the cabin is finished in Cañones.
Did Elud finish the rock wall?
The bedroom facing south?
I was less of a person then, I know.
I was less of a bird then, too.
Do the two streams still run?
The roadrunner? The crane?
Remember the night on the porch: Chinaco and chilies
by the Rio Grande, the cloud that passed over us
in the shape of your face?
We both saw it. You were the weather.
I was moving to you, to the river, but
I was not a morning dove, or a marsh hawk.
I’m sorry that I could not stay. Your name was too big for me,
twice my age—you were still running faster than water.
I moved to the farthest tip of the East,
you sent me binoculars for my bird-watching.
and a bunch of Mexican sage from the bosque.
Santiago, I am my own weather now.
Santiago, I am my own river.
Santiago, I am a better bird for flying.
The pulled-apart world scatters
its bad news like a brush fire,
the ink bleeds out the day’s undoing
and here we are again: alive.
The tributary of this riverine dark
widens into the mind’s brief break.
Let the flood come, the rowdy water
beasts are knocking now and now.
What’s left of the woods is closing in.
Don’t run. Open your mouth big
to the rising and hope to your god
your good heart knows how to swim.