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Watching The Mayan Women Analysis

Author: poem of Luisa Villani Type: poem Views: 4

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I hang the window inside out

         like a shirt drying in a breeze

and the arms that are missing come to me

         Yes, it's a song, one I don't quite comprehend

although I do understand the laundry.

         White ash and rain water, a method

my aunt taught me, but I'll never know

         how she learned it in Brooklyn. Her mind

has gone to seed, blown by a stroke,

         and that dandelion puff called memory

has flown far from her eyes. Some things remain.

         Procedures. Methods. If you burn

a fire all day, feeding it snapped

         branches and newspapers--

the faces pressed against the print

         fading into flames-you end up

with a barrel of white ash. If

         you take that same barrel and fill it

with rain, let it sit for a day,

         you will have water

that can bring brightness to anything.

         If you take that water,

and in it soak your husband's shirts,

         he'll pause at dawn when he puts one on,

its softness like a haunting afterthought.

         And if he works all day in the selva,

he'll divine his way home

         in shirtsleeves aglow with torchlight.


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