Francisco Aragón


City Moon

Perfect disc of moon, huge
and simmering
low on the capital’ s filthy horizon — ¡ Ay,
qué luna más hermosa! she says
pushing the stroller slowly down Atocha.
And gorgeous too the firm-thighed

boys from Lisbon
a block away, who work
Kilometer Zero’ s sidewalk, the neon
shoestore they lean against
cupping the flames
of passing strangers.

February Snow

The tint of the sky between sunset and night.

And wandering with you and your nephew
in that maze, half-lost — Madrid
of the Austrias — looking for Plaza of the Green

Cross where, days before you arrived,
an Opel with false plates was parked, its wheels
straddling the curb, and so the van

heading for the barracks that morning
had to slow to squeeze
past... Back at the hotel your mom

is holding up her gift — Amethyst, she says
admiring how light
when passing through a prism

from Of Dark Love


once again I look out your window
and the world looks oddly different,
maybe the fields have blossomed,
or perhaps more stars have been born

delirious waves caress my feet,
something new, unknown,
sunsets whisper in my ear as well,
everywhere I find your odor, your shape

you are among old-growth pines,
in the fog along the coastal rocks,
around the most somber of afternoons

impossible to wipe away your job
from my eyes, from my sad mouth —
you are the universe made flesh

from Of Dark Love


there has never been sunlight for this love,
like a crazed flower it buds in the dark,
is at once a crown of thorns and
a spring garland around the temples

a fire, a wound, the bitterest of fruit,
but a breeze as well, a source of water,
your breath — a bite to the soul,
your chest — a tree trunk in the current

make me walk on the turbid waters,
be the ax that breaks this lock,
the dew that weeps from trees