Teofania

by Emily Ho

The air was
silver trash and yellow flowers,
candles from el dia de los muertos
still burning,
the skinny voices of the boys
in the alley below:
Ai, mami! Don’t we look like mangos in a tree?
Take our picture too—

Other photographs include:
Crucifix fixed to a city bus dash,
Ribbed horses in sombreros (out of focus),
Cactus Christmas lights ushering out the last days,
Coyotes crying like children in darkness,
And two photographs I did not take—

Coming in off cobbled street, the discoteca
is wagging, doggerel,
losing body to beat, to sweat, to heat
and I nearly miss her—
dancing and crying and looking
at me.

I don’t know if I should ignore her, or
pinch her elbow
and smile; if there’s some bearing in
dancing beside her,
we moving like mackerel at school,
like an echo, a recitation—on earth
as it is in heaven.

I turn to leave when
some pìnto hombre
pinches my elbow,
coughs like the clack of a door
closed with unsteady hands,
yo soy Dìos.