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Home / Issue 35 / EN ABONOS (circa 1951)

EN ABONOS (circa 1951)

By Jesús Mena

I ‘member
The muffled oars
Slicing through murky water
The moon
Masking itself
A cover of darkness
Amá and me y mí hermano
Crickets chirping in the carrizo
On the edge of the Río Bravo

I ‘member
The soggy banks
Mi hermano
Yanked off his shoes
Fearing they’d get muddied
They slipped

                off his fingers

                into the bog

Un zapato mejicano,
One shoe americano.

I ‘member
My brother descalso
Bare feet slapping pavement
Amá buying him shoes at Cavazos’
En abonos

Y tus zapatos?
The clerk asked
Los perdí
Cuando cruzamos el río

Amá, con cara roja,
Shhhht, niño!
Un dolar
En abonos.

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