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Last Meal: Breakfast Tacos, San Antonio, Tejas

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Breakfast Tacos, from the series Seven Days, 2003, by Chuck Ramirez




Let me be your last meal.
Let me harvest the notes
I took from your mother’s
watery hands, street vendors
in Rome, Ms. Rosie
from our taquería, you:
in the sun, in the open air,
let me give you zucchini
and their elusive blossoms —
my arms, my hands.
Pumpkiny empanadas
of my feet, pulpy as a newborn’s.
Guisada’d loin of my calf
muscle. On a plate white
and crisp as the ocean,
lemoned eyeballs like two
scallops. The red, ripe
plum of my mouth.
Perhaps with coffee,
you’d have the little lobe
of my ear sugared as a wedding
cookie. The skin of my belly,
my best chicharrón, scrambled
with the egg of my brain
for your breakfast tacos.
My lengua like lengua.
Mi pescuezo, el mejor hueso.
Let me be your last meal:
mouthfuls of my never-to-be-digested
face, my immovable femur
caught in your throat
like a fish bone. Let my body be
what could never leave your body.
You can read the rest of the PINTURA : PALABRA portfolio in the March 2016 issue of Poetry. All images in this portfolio are courtesy of and with permission from the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Breakfast Tacos, from the series Seven Days by Chuck Ramirez, museum purchase through the Luisita L. and Franz H. Denghausen Endowment © 2003, Estate of Charles Ramirez.
Source: Poetry (March 2016)

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Last Meal: Breakfast Tacos, San Antonio, Tejas

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  • Laurie Ann Guerrero was born and raised in San Antonio, and she earned her BA from Smith College and her MFA from Drew University. She is the author of the full-length collections A Crown for Gumecindo (Aztlan Libre Press, 2015) and A Tongue in the Mouth of the Dying (University of Notre Dame Press, 2013), which was the winner of the Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize, selected by Francisco X. Alarcon. Guerrero's chapbook, Babies Under the Skin (2008), won the Panhandler Publishing Award, chosen by Naomi Shihab Nye. Guerrero's poetry and critical work have appeared in Huizache, Texas Monthly, Acentos Review, Women's Studies Quarterly, Palo Alto Review, Global City Review, Texas Observer, Meridians: feminism, race, transnationalism, Feminist Studies and others. 

    A CantoMundo fellow and member of the Macondo Writers' Workshop, Guerrero has served on the faculty at University of the Incarnate Word, University of Texas-El Paso, Palo Alto College, and Gemini Ink, a community-centered literary arts organization in San Antonio. She was...

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