Two

 

Multiplying Mirrors in the Cold

 

You advise
         you reproach
         you scream masochist
y’know that between two alarms
         no calendars run
         similar
to how yr stubborn hands
         can’t stop the water
You know that in this autounbirthing 4 × 365
the wind eats you
         oysters
                 butterflies
+those friends w/ gutregrets
You know that until the sea has sloughed
off course
that the metaphor is a glug
         of alcohol for whenever
+ the wasteland is a cursive
         of fuzzy presences
You know it
         + you advise
                 + you reproach
                         + you feign
but you keep
        yestergroaning
                 crossgull
multiplying mirrors in the cold

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Multiplicando Espejos En El Frio

 

Te aconsejas
            te reprochas
            te gritas masoquista
sabes que entre dos dianas
            no corren calendarios
            semejantes
que tus manos tercas
            no pueden detener el agua
Tú sabes que en este desnacerse 4 × 365
el viento se come
            ostros
                 mariposas
y los amigos con remordimientos
Tú sabes que hasta el mar ha mudado
de rumbo
que la metáfora es un trago
            de alcohol para hasta cuándo
y terreno baldío esta escritura
            de borrosas presencias
Tú lo sabes
            y te aconsejas
                        y te reprochas
                        y te amagas
pero sigues
            gimeayeres
                         transgaviota
multiplicando espejos en el frío

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh Patria

 

Frequently
(especially
        when the parks go nude)
the back housebreaks
for the effort to adapt itself to the
                                                    (heights
Jagged nails
the sinkings in those nerves
         in the shavings of that urgency
+ the nightlong springs of that ram
go
   come
      + fall
        to no end
in the immobility of ruminant eyes
well
I’m here for the pocket Larousse
                Oh nation so small…
1488
     1489
         1490
(I miss you
        ¿really?
        mostly I miss
never having to repeat full
                                                addresses)
               …Chunks of life…
memory of the image that drains
+squeezes
w/ torments of mirrors + razors
(the numbers get in w/ blood
        y’were right my old teacher)
meanwhile digits trip on the r
on the p
        or the q
                Perhaps you never knew that
                                           (I wanted you so much
swallowing
in the photography of the absence
static vision in b + w
(corrected
     gray watercolor in the rain)
w/o trace of erected masts or even men
I made a home in the cloud
more than seeing
        diviner
here
    the tame + fixed sky
there
    an evil hill
(that)
        rectangles
                freeways
                    sketched greenness
                         … those old ways
                                                        (convoluted
                         which the foot, since infancy,
                                                 (no truce covered
I pinned 1490 to hatred
listened
   + relistened
looked
   + relooked
        The murmuring palm, the music
                                                        (repertory,
flesh removed from yr form
in yr form I flagged + I revived
umbilical miracle of salts
I cover you
            you cover me
one
+ once again
survivor fish
        transoceanic
          in my redream of all yr music
                                                        (the same
        as the sea in the small
        conch cell
The sea
        the sea
          gulf that penetrates me +
                + defines me yrs
w/ the tender shark in frenzy
Yes this anchored woman
        who sharpens her tusks
w/ the hurricane eye w/o concessions
is yr obverse
        + yr the reverse
of the city in the state of place
all of this heartshrieks from trickery
it comes to me from milk w/o quarter
the sired me
  + that I sired
        Leaved me the old trunk
        Leaved me the old trunk
                                     (where I wrote a date
It’s yr same self
        illegal
           gagged
bloodied w/ the children of the dead
it’s yr same self
        same sore self
           same form
that w/me
  + w/ us
rewind
collapse
        + get up
w/ the fever of change in yr head
It’s you
          i’m
            we’re
the same heart shriek from trickery
yell
   tree
       nation
           where I stole a kiss, where
                        (I learned to dream
The sea
        ‘cause it’s you
                the orchard already w/o flowers, w/o leaves,
The sea
        ‘cause it’s me
              w/o greenness

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh Patria

 

Con frecuencia
(especialmente
           cuando los parques se desnudan)
el atrás domesticado
por el esfuerzo de adaptarse a las
                                                    (alturas
encabrita las uñas
las hunde en los nervios
            en las cortadas de la urgencia
y los saltos trasnochados del carnero
van
    vienen
         y caen
            sin resultado
en la inmovilidad de los ojos rumiantes
entonces
vengo al pequeño larousse
                       Oh patria tan pequeña…
1488
     1489
         1490
(te extraña
            ¿verdad?
            más me extraña a mí
nunca he repetido direcciones
                                                       completas)
                        …Pedazos de la vida…
memoria de la imagen que se escurre
y se aprieta
con tortura de vidrios y navajas
(los números entran con sangre
                        tenía razón mi vieja maestra)
mientras los dedos tropiezan con la r
con la p
            o con la q
                        Quizá nunca supiese que te
                                                           (quería tanto
hasta golondrinar
en la fotografía de la ausencia
estática visión en blanco y negro
(corrijo
        acuarela gris bajo la lluvia)
sin rastros de mástiles ni hombres
hogarizo en la nube
más que ver
            adivino
aquí
   el cielo manso y fijo
allá
   un cerro brujo
(qué)
    rectángulos
            carreteras
                 esbozo de verdor
                        …los viejos senderos
                                                            (retorcidos
                         que el pie, desde la infancia,
                                                (sin tregua recorrió
Pego 1490 al oído
escucho
       y rescucho
busco
       y rebusco
                        La palma rumorosa, la música
                                                                        (sabida,
carne alejada de tu cuerpo
en tu cuerpo desfallezco y me recobro
umbilical milagro de las sales
te recorro
         me recorres
una
    y otra vez
pez sobreviviente
                        transmarino
                           en mí resuena toda tu música,
                                                                       (lo mismo
                        que el mar en la pequeña
                        celda del caracol
El mar
            el mar
            golfo que me penetra y
                        y me define tuya
con la ternura tiburona en celo
Si esta mujer herrada
           que afila los colmillos
con el ojo de huracán sin concesiones
es tu anverso
            y tú eres el reverso
de la ciudad en estado de sitio
todo este alarido de corazón en trampa
me viene de la leche sin cuarteles
que me engendró
           y me engendraste
                       Dejadme el viejo tronco
                       Dejadme el viejo tronco
                                               (donde escribí una fecha
Eres tú misma
           ilegal
                amordazada
sangrando con los hijos de los muertos
eres tú misma
            con un salvoconducto
oteando el horizonte de las garzas
eres tú misma
           misma llaga
                mismo cuerpo
que conmigo
            y con nosotros
se retuerce
se desploma
           y se levanta
con la fiebre del cambio en la cabeza
Eres tú
            soy
                somos
el mismo alarido del corazón en trampa
grito
             árbol
                         patria
                         donde he robado un beso, donde
                                                            (aprendí a soñar
El mar
              porque eres tú
                          el huerto ya sin flores, sin hojas,
El mar
              porque soy yo
sin verdor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contributors

Diana Morán

Born in the capital, Panama City, on November 17th, 1932, Dr. Diana Morán led a life of social, sexual, and political activism that saw her arrested and exiled while still winning the country’s top prize for literature. A poet, union leader, professor, critic, and historian, Morán’s indelible if obscured legacy in Panama remains her ardent advocacy for feminism, the cultures of the isthmus, and a holistic appreciation of art in its myriad forms. In 1965, her book of poems, Gaviotas de Cruz Abierta won the the Ricardo Miró National Literary Contest of the Republic of Panama. Her students, friends and peers continued her work even after her exile by the Martínez & Torijjos Junta in 1968. Fearing for her life, she fled to Mexico City where she she finished her doctorate at El Colegio de Mexico, worked at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, and continued her polemic resistance to the military governments, imperialism, reactionary contras, and sexism. Diana Morán died at her desk, still in exile, in 1987. Her published works are Eva definida (1959), Ficción e historia: la narrativa de José Emilio Pacheco (1979 with Ivette Jiménez de Baez and Edith Negrín), Soberana presencia de la Patria (1964), En el nombre del Hijo (1966) and Reflexiones junto a tu piel (1982). Her doctoral thesis Cien Años de Soledad: novela de la desmitificación (1987) and first book, Gaviotas de Cruz Abierta (1992) were both published posthumously.

Ash Ponders

Panamanian multimedia artist Ash Ponders lives in the Sonoran Desert making visuals for newspapers and art galleries. His recent work has been covered by the NYT, BBC, CNN and Teen Vogue. In his spare time he translates poems, chases hot air balloons, teaches firearms safety, and tutors adults in both Spanish and English. His translation of Reflexiones junto a tu piel will be published by Gramma in the fall of 2017. @ashponders (both Instagram and Twitter)

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