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Tormented

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Enormous solids were falling
from who knows what heights,
who knows what places.
I trembled,
and in my mouth
an inky taste. Precise.

Hail, maybe,
enormous kernels of ice;
coming down,
with a scandalous impact,
didn't bury me, terrorized,
under the covers.
It didn't happen, it wasn't that.

A below zero temperature   
circulated through the soft center of my bones.
A truly searing cold.   

Nothing having to do with monsters came to pass.
Nothing to do with interminable distances.
No brutal incidents.
Only the agony of acorns.
Only a cycle that completes itself
every few years
and transforms into a tropical forest
a choiring oak grove.   

Which is the fear.

Source: Poetry (April 2008)

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This poem originally appeared in the April 2008 issue of Poetry magazine

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Tormented

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  • Pura López-Colomé was born in Mexico City in 1952, spent part of her childhood in Mérida, Yucatan, and attended high school in the US. She studied literature at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, publishing literary criticism, poems, and translations in a regular column for the newspaper Unomásuno. English translations of her work include No Shelter: Selected Poems (Graywolf Press, 2002), and Aurora (Shearsman Books, 2008), and Watchword (Wesleyan University Press, 2012). 

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