Poetry Issue 15

   Issue #17 : July-December 2012

Aditi Machado





      XIV

      MY DIFFICULT RELATIONSHIP WITH LUCIA

      Lucia is older than me, though not by much. I see her nearly every
      day. Her hair is very short—like small thorns, if you touch it.

      Lucia rides horses. She likes to lean forward on a still horse, her
      breasts against its neck, and smell its cool, long hair.

      Sometimes I am in the horse shed with her, pressing myself against a
      wall. Once in the next room there was a dog in labor.

      Why do women give birth?

      Lucia had a singular childhood. That’s like saying she went to school
      in Italy.

      Everyone says Lucia looks like her grandmother, a great beauty. I
      met her once. She had a big horn on her face.

      Lucia taught me to ride a bicycle. I broke my knee. Try kneeling on
      a broken knee.

      Lucia’s father is very wealthy. She once tried to convince me he
      owned all the horse sheds in the world.

      But I love Lucia, I love her. She is like a sister to me. My mother
      won’t let me have her, because my mother is a saint.

      My mother had the thickest hair. She is all gone now and she was so
      beautiful.

      Sometimes Lucia gets off her horse and hands me a lump of sugar.
      Once I went to lick it off her hand, but she let it fall at my feet.

      Every day the women in my life fail me, even in their most glorious
      and beautiful perfumes.

       

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