By Jacob Shores-Argüello
The bus arrives in the orchid heat,
in the place where coffee grows
like rubies in the valley’s black soil.
We disembark, walk in twos so we
don’t slip on the genesis mud.
The woman next to me carries
three cellphones as gifts for cousins
and a bucket of chicken to share.
How is it that I have come this far
with nothing, that I am empty-
handed in this country of blessings?
A procession of rust-colored macaws
glides above us. Their ashy shadows
draw crosses onto all of our heads.
Jacob Shores-Argüello is a Costa Rican American writer. His second book of poetry, Paraíso, won the inaugural CantoMundo poetry prize and will appear in 2017.
More Poems about Activities
Vagrants and Loiterers
You got that clean waistcoat,
the bright white of a well-tailored
shirt, you got those loose-as-sacks
slacks and some spit-polished shoes,
and you know, whether you are looking
like money, or about to take a stroll,
to tilt that hat like you own
the world; yeah, smoke...
In the warmth of night I put feet to my plan: waited
for my brothers to sleep. They’d spent the day
sharpening their hooks, repairing the great net,
filling gourds with fresh water. They’d bundled
taro wrapped in leaves sitting below the cross seats.
More Poems about Nature
What Women Are Made Of
We are all ventricle, spine, lung, larynx, and gut.
Clavicle and nape, what lies forked in an open palm;
we are follicle and temple. We are ankle, arch,
sole. Pore and rib, pelvis and root
and tongue. We are wishbone and gland and molar
Of Tribulation, these are They,
Denoted by the White.
— Emily Dickinson
in the split geode
a Santa’s grotto
every surface —
like sea urchins’ —
in the doorways
sleepers from the womb
to make of anything succulent