Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sergio A. Ortiz - Three Poems

The Suffocated Terrace

“El silencio es el refugio de los desvalidos, pero también es la madriguera de los cómplices."
- Jorge Gómez Jiménez, Managing Editor of Letralia

a corpse buried
under a mound
of coconuts

at the hour
of the early breeze
the red ground

where heat and light
are born like eggs
with chorizo

the stench of vomit
a dead man’s journal
I opened and

read the first entry

today I went to talk about my pension plan
with the people at the suffocated terrace

and it was like a revelation
like walking down the steps of a twisted scar
to the crack at the bottom

of my back
the journey was
sprayed with vinegar

I remembered grade school
we had better toys
and our shoes

were made of leather
hardly anyone complained
about their DNA

or taxes and I was single
a kid but I paid taxes
nothing like I do now

to the same people
at the suffocated terrace
should I say suffocating
or call it The Suffocate

is it a terrace

now that it’s walled
and readied for the next

this sterile longevity
that someday soon will not have anyone
to pay their pensions or their health plans

and yet they
suffocate us on their terrace
or the likes of us the nopalitos

coyoles fritos
pupusas rellenas de cerdo y queso
the rice and beans

of the rich the political
butt of their jokes


The python made you shrink
like all the other little Hamlet's
Cerberus bribes: Business men
in silk ties, boogieing Isadora’s
whose scarves tangle when they
trundle around the globe
choking on meth-amphetamines.
They grease the bodies of social
security millionaires in the back
of warehouses.

You bring me Mariachis
and Japanese paper moons
on my birthday, but I am a virgin
attended by banana breads,
and an old withered Madeleine.

Money is the sperm fluid
dead frogs take to your bed,
your breakfast, along with
freshly cut roses imported from Belgium
while drums announce the countdown
for yet another electoral confrontation.

She’s a Homophobic Warlord with a Miniature Bible Carefully Tucked in Her Bra

It started before she could read
at Sunday mass
she’d stare at the faces of immovable angels,
La Madonna and byzantine saints
in cut-glass windows imagining herself
speak to the masses.

When her boobs started growing
the junior-high jock,
a prodigy bible belt preacher,
invited her to Watchtower
study classes. They graduated from high school,
married, and filled-out their NRA applications
on the same day.

Everything was motionless until she walks-in
on her husband and the church’s accountant,
a six foot love gift from the Castro district.

Two hundred nineteen years after La Bastille
she remarried,
joined a New Age theosophy movement
learned to suck her thumbs and self flagellate
while screaming slogans
about the constitutional rights of breeders
at a prime-time puppeteer program in Puerto Rico.

Sergio A. Ortiz is a retired educator, a poet, and photographer. He has a B.A. in English literature, and a M.A. in philosophy. Flutter Press released his debut chapbook, At the Tail End of Dusk, in October of 2009. Ronin Press released his second chapbook, topography of a desire, in May of 2010. His photographs have been published or are forthcoming in:, The Neglected Ratio, and The Monongahela Review. He was recently published, or is forthcoming in: The Battered Suitcase, .CRUDO, WTF PWM, The 13th Warrior Review, Mad Swirl, and Heavy Bear.

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