I'm a poet and artist living in Maine and often in Mexico. I have three books: Guerrero And Heart's Blood, set in pre-Conquest Mexico, Where They Know, poems, and In Love and Wonder, paintings. Poems have appeared in Little Star, The Caribbean Writer, Numbat, The Adirondack Review, Wolf Moon Journal and others.
Eight Loud Hounds
A young woman with eight dogs
sat in the grass and chewed gum,
observed her feet or stared ahead
to where the road had turned
beneath the full grown summer
(her hair fell long and yellow
to the green that grew to meet it)
sat and chewed and whistled softly
to the eight loud hounds who ran
in circles around my car, then
stopped to gnaw the wheels of
my intention to move along.
Eight Loud Hounds was originally published in The Adirondack Review
In The Park, Merida
Drums and sirens and the hooing of doves,
a tour bus emptied, a snapping page of news,
and dozens of our interloper tongues
are torpid murmurs in the drenching shade.
Nearby, schoolgirls laugh and walk away,
not noticing the country boy in rags
half dozing on a bench. A shoeshine man
lays out his waxes on an old blue tarp.
A homeless holy man arrives, not naked,
not down here, except his feet, as black as
the melting streets. The boy is fast asleep.
The ancient trees are whitewashed up their trunks.
It's said to keep the giants free of ants.
A gringa lopes on by, half a gypsy,
half the girl next door we had to leave.
The shoeshine man sits down to face his chair.
We both look up to watch the burning sky.
The gringa strolls on back the way she came.
There's a slight, electric scent of rain.
Black Coffee at Sabor
Behind rainbow shades: what suns peer out from
shadows onto sunstruck folks from everywhere,
strolling by, "Re-turn to Ja-mai-ca" loud
like rum honey into us from next door,
blue umbrellas under blue cotton skies.
O find me a place anywhere down here,
let me climb the slow days with this black pen,
invite all the loves-not-here to taste
this pleasure with me in a long heaven of sand
this morning's Coronado gleamed against:
its fast life, words of awe from all of us,
its end, our pleasure-feast ashore, and away,
our new desire, its ancient life inside us
our feet will tell the story of tonight
in steps' electric measure, while skin to skin
sounds the air to God, not far from Cozumel.
In The Park, Merida and Black Coffee at Sabor were originally published in The Caribbean Writer.
©2014 Alan Clark