sugarcane fields    whisper to those who reach                          el otro lado
descansa aquí    amongst víboras y machetes
descansa aquí    abajo de luna conjurada

dawn     the harvest begins    sanctuaries ablaze
                                               but a body can only hold so much water
                                                fuego cannot be extinguished
                                                                                              by fear or flight

fierce North winds unfurl

Dios mío

plumaje rodea ceniza retoza
they are difficult to distinguish                                                         from afar

                                           a whisper resumes

                                                descansa aquí amongst víboras y machetes

                                               descansa aquí you have reached el otro lado


Gabriela Ybarra Lemmons was born and raised in South Texas, a stone’s throw from the Rio Grande. She was raised by migrant workers and earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Kansas. She is currently a dual language teacher in Topeka, Kansas. 

[Purchase Issue 26 here.]


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