When Weathermen Insist Storms are Feminine

By PEGGY ROBLES-ALVARADO

they say it’s because they are hard to predict
and even harder to forget

their naming ceremony broadcasted over live feeds, satellite images
insisting she settles on the tongues of both faithful and atheist

María: a road blocked by land that slides into
screaming mouths, the saltwater of sorrow stuck in throats

She: the howl of Guabancex, cousin to the merciless Santa Clara,
The lady of the Sea, her eye set on the sugarcane of Yabucoa

Her name a destruction so great it rests with sisters just as
deadly: Irma, Katrina

They say it’s easier to remember a woman’s name
than a set of numbers but her figure is unforgettable

Wet, wide-hipped woman, slit the throat of the horizon
leaving only damp bodies to sway under the moonlight

and still some men think they can simply dry what was
left of her with paper towels and a false prayer

 

Peggy Robles-Alvarado is a tenured New York City educator with graduate degrees in elementary and bilingual education. In 2018 she received an MFA in performance and performance studies from Pratt Institute. She is a 2017 Pushcart Prize nominee; a CantoMundo, Academy for Teachers, and Home School Fellow; a two-time International Latino Book Award winner; and author of Conversations with My Skin and Homage to the Warrior Women. Through RoblesWrites Productions, she edited the following anthologies: The Abuela Stories Project in 2016 and Mujeres, The Magic, The Movement and The Muse in 2017. For more information, visit RoblesWrites.com.

 

[Purchase Issue 16 here.]

When Weathermen Insist Storms are Feminine

Related Posts

Gabriella Fee

June 2022 Poetry Feature: Gabriella Fee

GABRIELLA FEE
Death springs from me like a hothouse flower. / My mother swaddles me in terrycloth / and vigils me for three days in her bed. / Pillbox. Rice and lentils. Kettle. Psalm. / She dims the lights as though I were a moth. / She combs my hair.

Image of Zhang Qiaohui and Yilin Wang's headshots.

Translation: “Soliloquy” by Zhang Qiaohui

ZHANG QIAOHUI
You know where Grandma is buried, but do not know / where Grandma’s Grandma is / Jiaochang Hill’s graves have long been displaced, now covered with lush greenery / In the mortal world, a saying, “to have no resting place even after death” / I stand at the old burial ground.

Tree

May 2022 Poetry Feature

By ELIZABETH METZGER
For now, let us choose not to remember / who said History repeats as Tragedy then Farce, / and who else / repeated such nonsense / with variations because, friends, allow me / to be pedantic, just this moment. History repeats / as Tragedy more than once.