Modeled on: “An Irish Childhood in England: 1951” by Eavan Boland
The rapid-fire drone of porch-front gossip,
the incessant flow of midday gallantry from
the overly dressed Abuelitos with
their ruffled Guayaberas brought it home to me:
Exile. Ration-book powdered milk.
I didn’t know what was me and
what was truly just picked up.
The Nights –
fraught with fried Plantains and Hamburgers
all colliding in one sole sweep –
were longer than the Days
Deep, dark, musical.
The nights were danced away,
With Heineken in hand and cigar in mouth.
McDonald’s interrupted with the intercom,
the speaker system ending a night with blue and red lights.
Cuban or American?
Spare key, or original.
Two parts confusion one part labels
My ID stated American, but my picture was only a punctuation mark.
A Cuban Childhood in America.