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Confessions of a Transplant

My first year living in America

the scent of frying garlic

sent me weeping. My eyes

swept the somber avenues,

starving for color. I devoured

the aquamarine of broken glass,

a wire festooned with yellow shoes,

the shower of plum blossoms

on a sidewalk. The memory

of sour mangoes made rivers

in my mouth. At the market, I picked

the greenest nectarines, dredged them

in salt that stung my chapped lips.

Words I hoarded like rock

candy, melted on my tongue

like my too-hard r’s. Range Rover, red

robin, river rock. I practiced

into the ear of an empty flagon,

reciting litanies to the saint

of lost things. The walls

echoed with whispers.

Lying lily-still in the goblet

of night, I drank the croons

of nameless birds.

from What Happens is NeitherFind more by Angela Narciso Torres at the library

Copyright © 2021 Angela Narciso Torres
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of Four Way Books.

Published in Angela Narciso Torres Poems

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.