Truths of an Embarrassing Movement of Lips or Pretentious Poet

The things done by the mouth
on that woman

standing in front of you are infinitely
possible of anything. Every word is

unpredictable as it comes
out of her. Sometimes the most eloquent

thought is communicated by her
speaking in tongues
made of red-neck, trucker,

and embarrassed sailors. She speaks: These words
I have are really all I have, but they mean

more than anything ever known.

It Ends Up Running Down the Middle Most of the Time

She wrote boxes of letters
she can’t address. There is
a litany of childhood poisons
all bottled up, so Chica trudges
on in the stink of the garage
rubbing the grease from a drive shaft
on her face. She can do lots of things,
but love is something she can’t
diagnose. The line of people
telling her what she is doing wrong
is getting so long. She denies it. Her
keeper is a man who shows no
affection. Showing much distaste for her,
so she feels the ugliness of her
being, yet she can sell anything to any
man because they want to molest her
slight, strong frame. Garage work suits her
being the only bun at that sausage party
makes her less woman and more thing.
In the jukebox of her memory, she dances
out of time. The song plays silent witness to
the passing of time—winning some, losing
some. Never can she manage to say anything
right, so she takes up her pen and brings it all
down crashing like oil and water separating
themselves. She has a sadness that grows all
around her like the ravages of salt
on metal. It’s all corroded. This drive
shaft is mine, she says. The faster she goes
the more obvious it’s bent like a fucking
jump rope just like the gawd-damned song
skipping in the jukebox
incessantly playing in her head.

In or Out or a Slow Sip of Poison

Existing in the same world

Chacho and the gringa are doing

a tango with no music.  Air compressors

only sound with blow torches, and grinding

wheels to dominate the air

thick with ethanol and carbon

monoxide.  Where in this filthy

 

world does beauty exist

 

other than in someone else’s

possessions?  She is naked dressed

as a man, naked to the frail nature of her

slight frame which she denies

with every exhale of the 100 chin-ups

she does in a single say.  There is no one

more genuinely themselves—even dressed up as

 

someone she’s not—as Chica.  Naked to

 

fail the tests of life around her.  Chacho with his

eyes the same color as hers, is a guarded man

with his heart beating on his greasy

rolled up sleeve.  His proud heart

sometimes scares him into arrhythmia

costing him a day’s pay and an emergency

room bill.  Secretly, she hates his enticing face

 

for being a picture taken of himself

 

from far, far away.  She don’t know

what to do, don’t know what to say.

Greasy Bitch

You must see me as a blow-

up doll.  I wonder if you even heard

 

the way you spoke.  So fucking

disrespectful for no good

 

reason, it seems you just wanted

to pick a fight.  But you don’t know me

 

any farther than the cock

you are, and I don’t play those games.

Good-Gawd-Damn

Chica—if nothing else—is
a charming little creature. Under

the soil of the garage, past her marble
façade, her face is the song

of a Siren. Glances are a sunbeam
peeking through black rumbling clouds

crashing hail the size of softballs
destroying every car city-wide. Fully

endowed with the skill of expression— amidst
the heat of Latin sounds, grinding

wheels, and blow torches—he looks
her in the eye triggering a mesmerizing

cyclone in the wake of her own
scan of his smudged face.

You Don’t Know Shit

It’s terribly hard to exist

in a world that gives zero fucks

about your suffering, Chica rubs her shoulder

after she pulls down an aggressive all-

terrain, ten-ply truck tire

from the shelf above her

head.   At times, Chica feels

like there isn’t a god

damned man in the world

who really cares about her,

because they just sort of like

some shit they made up in their heads

about her, and none of that is remotely accurate.

Skies Walking Away in the Shadows of Mirrors

Such a strange creature, she meets

her eyes in the mirror

as she thinks.  It doesn’t matter

how far she pushes that

tiny frame of hers, it will never be

enough.  Chica pounds her joints

with rubber compounds made

to make half ton pickups keep rolling,

every single day without complaint.  Acting

as if she’s a man, she’s learned the male

definition of things.  It surprises her

how the deconstruction of roles makes language

behave differently.  The elderly man

at the shop, who just learned how to speak

English a few short years ago, is the only man

she truly trusts, and she doesn’t even

know what he’s saying

most of the time.  That’s why she keeps

the Spanish to English dictionary

in her pocket. She calls him

Papi.  He calls her

sweetie and tells her she’s preciosa.