Arts and Culture

Suzi Q. Smith: Read the poetry created by this week's cover artist

Page 4 of 7

I Do Not Know How to Love You in English

I cannot tell by its rhythm where this heart was born, it is only music pulsing through palms. We know this when we hold hands, let whispers tickle ears whatever language they assume.

I do not know how to cry in English no sé cómo llorar en Español, tears are born world citizens they do not need to speak to find each other, to rush into rivers that cannot be dammed.

I will not ask the wind where it is from. It would only answer with its coming and going, does not recognize these fences or lines, does not even see them.

I will not ask the Monarchs for a passport, will not pinch them from the air and pin them for their passage, will not shoot them as they fly away.

I will not shush the roaring seas beating upon the border from another nation's shore will not pretend its origin is worth less or more, we are each of us worth our weight in water or en papeles.

I will not ask each grain of sand from whence it came, will not interrogate the sediments and segregate them by shade, I will not cast a net around the beaches.

I do not know how to love you in English No sé cómo te amo en Español; only know that all that life begins with love that cannot be walled or conquered. I will not ask love where it comes from,

only know that it resides in me, in the descansos dotting the desert. I do not know what language bullets speak have only ever heard them whisper past my head in words I do not wish to remember or repeat,

would rather press palm to palm and whisper poems "Give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free . . ." Would rather smile, warm as stew-filled belly and break bread.

I will not ask the flames I cook with for identification when they burn more orange than red, white, or blue

as I do not know how to eat in English No sé cómo comer en Español;

I do not know how to breathe in English No sé cómo respirar en Español;

I do not know how to bleed in English No sé cómo sangrar en Español;

but I think it is the same Creo que es lo mismo

Con mis palabras y con mi lengua rota yo trato hablar.

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Kelsey Whipple
Contact: Kelsey Whipple