By ALDO AMPARÁN
Is he a saguaro burning in the desert’s shadow—or a sidewinder’s tracks on sand—
Have I left footprints in the snow of his dreaming—
Has he dressed his dead in marigold & fed them sweet bread—(have I—)
Are his hands two blades of light slicing open your dimming—
O moon, o cloud, o wind rattle. O luminous night, how long can you linger—
Cross the desert & the sea—past a month, a decade—my palm’s brief & dusty lifeline—
Aldo Amparán is the author of Brother Sleep, winner of the 2020 Alice James Award. Born and raised in the border cities of El Paso, Texas, USA, and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, Mexico, they have received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and CantoMundo. Their work most recently appeared in the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day, AGNI, New England Review, Ploughshares, Southeast Review, and elsewhere.