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Omens at Fajardo (1993)

it starts on the highway east

a mangled bicycle, two black shoes

just on the lip of the tar top road a blue car,

the police peacocks preen and strut


out over the Caribbean

the sky is bright brown, in the harbor

a capsized vanilla yacht

bobs, on the shoulders

of the carbonized mountains,

sunset, clouds


drive slow: dogs snap at tires

speed up: and young toughs chuck

stones at our jeep from the slanted streets


the wind off the bay

smells of dead cod

seagulls circle the drunks:

one bantam one has fast rangy hands

till, from a wrought iron balcony

water, by the pail full

slows him down


as the sun drowns

the first fisherman arrive

they wash in one at a time

then they pile up, steaming

clumps of rot and puss


Angelo Verga

Verga curates and hosts spoken word & poetry readings at The Cornelia Street Café.


The Brooklyn Rail


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