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Walking in Los Angeles
by Cynthia Buiza

I keep coming back to a place I have lost
a long time ago
when I was already old
and no one in the village knew my name.

The church where Felisa spent
her Sunday afternoons
still asserts its presence:
Spire, dome, gloom.
The pealing bells as the villagers stopped in their tracks
to pick their pockets for miracles.

I’ve always wished that things were different
possessing too much credulity
the ship of fools—
even as I know that things weren’t always the same.

A neighbor could obtain mercy without a price.
A girl could dream by the window
and watch time hang like invisible clouds
as Love In The Afternoon crackled on the radio.

It was a time when women danced on the square
as if it was the only business of living,
and young men fished solemnly on Rawis beach
to catch their shadows on water.

All this is lost now. I do not even know who dreams when I dream—
only that everything comes to me in sleep, and waking, I lose them all over again.

© Cynthia Buiza

 

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