Above early morning reed tops tiptoe children peer at my long black beard of encouraging thought. Hard work Aztlan songs drift down the crying shore. All day hard luck women pound the long week's laundry just below low flying purple dragonflies over the virgin field of weed covered graves. Half naked boys smack muddy holy water for fat frogs.

In the bitter distance government guns crack and bring everyday everyone to a few seconds still. Sky gazing marguerites wave from the altar bright ridge overlooking the lake of the twelve apostles. Pale deer drink the holy water of slow motion birds crossing the talking waters. Tired living years of race wars I wait for the bride of you in the magenta evening pencil in hand worry watching breaking twilight fade off tuberoses.

I dream you bend your bodyline over the floating moon and drink its cool burning circle. My shadow of manly man folds across your silvered back lust wet with your take me theme of future children golden years and mingled dust. Rivers of blood lift our bones into ritual dance over the witnessing earth. A dark flight of jungle sound passes through our mouth of dreams. We cling together at the foot of a terraced mountain with skeletons of the sleeping wind.

Hot Indian summer late night calls from your oiled jasmine thigh cloud of stark wildness. Red lights blink above the moomlit misty shore our gentle hiss of hips and finally sleeping like cloud warriors.

                                staring at Lake Atitlan
                                 I held your loving
                                 hand of hope
                                 with moonlike silence
                                 & never let go

Paul Lobo Portugés: was reared in Merkel, West Texas, until saved by UCLA, the American Film Institute, and UC Berkeley. He lives in Santa Barbara, teaches creative writing at UCSB. He has taught creative writing at UC Berkeley, USC, SBCC, Cuesta, and the University of Provence. He is the proud father of two sons. Mr. Portugés books include The Visionary Poetics of Allen Ginsberg, Saving Grace, Hands Across the Earth, The Flower Vendor, Paper Song, Aztec Birth, The Body Electric Journal, The Silent Spring of Rachel Carson, and Mao (forthcoming); his poems are scattered in small magazines across America. He has received recognition from the National Endowment, the Ford Foundation, the American Film Institute, and the Fulbright Commission.
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