Walking El Pulguero

Walking at El Pulguero,
a tarp shines
next to the dog track.
The dog track
a bowl similar to the Colosseum,
but with steel poles
subdividing the voyeurs
and attending bidders,
tickets yellow
and flapping in their hands.
Greyhounds on the billboards    ...    

I walk
under the stands.
Bracelets in a jumble
under the black-
marker-scribbled
advertisement brown board.
It exemplifies
the innocent
rebuttal to being cultured
by my particular country — 
the country of my birth,
though not quite my teaching.
The Cuba of the womb,
of the in-walking-distance-
of-the-beach land
in my memory, with shouts
beside our houses
at the corner belonging
to the distribution agency.
Fruits, mangoes, milk,
soy beef, when that traveled
our way, divided
and partitioned by an old
minibus with a man
in an apron and a smudged
baby blue shirt.
I remember soda bottles
being carried off
up our streets, but by who
I don’t remember.
Too vintage a memory
to properly retell.
Orangey glued to the burn
of sunset on time
that young inside — 

I as well draw from that
very same exclusion,
a pleasure from this participating
memory. My childhood was
a happy one, albeit
the pangs existed, sharp
like a battery, violent,
sorrowful, but elastic,
coming back at night home,
be it dark inside the house.

This indictment,
the personal exclusion goes
timid up my skin and neck.
            At the Pulguero
            or not, I’ll find
something to bother about.
It is that time, turbulent
and worrisome until later.
It is just not only this place.
And so I reap
             from the crystalline sky,
             the mangled trees,
             the faux marble and jet
             furniture with gold
             filigree forming a subtle
             Chinese dragon what I can.

The gold iron floor lamps.
The off-brand running shoes — 
Fila, but not really.

Always apart from what
includes me. Vaguely
includes me, is chummy enough,
falling out of the tether
when more incisive probing
corners along.

And so in my cooperation-
less demeanor, I shuffle
further into the flea market,
never benefitting
from the seductive resignation
of allowing everything
a true potential buying power.

 


The baby marmoset gurgles
when belly-rubbed.
Deserted by its mother,
the video lector tells us.
The YouTube bubble
incarnadine in the corner.
A hibiscus, a bee dropping
from its flight.
One dreams it could be
okay to keep the little monkey
for an alarm clock
in the a.m.

           A gang of marmosets
           intertwines among the branches.
           The ground heaves an ash coloring.
           I bogey my apprehensions
           on the little primates flinging.
           Bug-eyed, I read
           their spastic jerking
           as uncohesive
           with my stock of reality.

 


The stony wheel
gurgling in its solar
pickling. Moss
underhand, the water
running its cataracts
of limpid murk.
The wheel has cracks
in the stony center.

 


A frittata offered
to us by a resident.
He’s a culinary student.
It was surplus practice.
And oats on the bread
loaves also in the offer.

He’s a kind gentleman,
toughened by who knows
what. He’s staying here
at the shelter and
I’m too coward to ask
about his life.
Like a scouter of fumy
          billows,
we all happen upon
the hits which we must
report to someone.
And god knows how they’ll
take it.

 


I listen in
on the praxis applied
to the nexus
in accelerating,
intimate make-out
fondling.
I feel it with every
go at the mouth
and lips, teeth
testing their courtship
at submittal,
effusive biting.

 


The phone
shelly,
an onyx coat
          warm
in the jacket
pocket.

A regulator’s annual
finish
like a yearling
passerine
flickering
on the computer
          screen.
More Poems by Eisder Mosquera