immigration, living

70,000

70,000

by Carmen H Gray

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(art by children, ages 10 and 11, while staying at a respite center run by the Catholic church in McAllen, Texas)

70,000 is a neat number

Rounded up for sixty-nine thousand and something beyond fifty

Easily divisible by two

Until you keep dividing in half

Eventually you reach fractions of a whole

Those shards of whole parts

Are not just numbers

They are fractured pieces of a person’s soul

Disturbances in family fault lines

That refuse to lay dormant

You can see it in the drawings of the children

Who are crying, ¿Dónde está mi mamá?”

And in the exanimated eyes

That can no longer produce tears

Those quashed emotions inhabit

An exponential fallout

From this tidy number

hope, letting go

Tenderness

Tenderness

by Carmen H Gray

Tender darkness with tendrils

That reach deep into the aching

Kissing our self-pity, rocking our illnesses

So sweet and comfortable in our cocoons

Tender silence from broken parts

Of mauled noises that struck our ears

Leaving us thrashing about

But you have to be still to hear the softness again

Tender wounds that weep with pus

But are covered ever and anon

Does it hurt more to extricate the poison?

Is tender just a state of mind?

Like a word that can be changed

With one letter

Tinder sparks that spread

Cauterizing the damage

Ushering in light, passion, heat, sound

Opening up to a new

Tenderness

 

Uncategorized

No Fear Here

“There’s a world of difference between truth and facts. Facts can obscure truth.”
―Maya Angelou

No Fear Here

by Carmen H Gray

Correlation does not equal causation

Therefore, your extension of fear

Is your absolute right, not an aberration

At least that’s how you can justify

Our collective disentegration

Because you must protect yourself

From a self-induced violent escalation

In this country birthed from rape and guns

We have created our own damnation

The past is not that

It is present in each generation

Whispering “this is from whence you came”

A closed circuit of continuous rotation

But what was closed by the hand of others

Can be opened anew by confrontation

Splintering into another

Incarnation