Aguacero Poem By Virgil Suárez

Aguacero Poem By Virgil Suárez

These downpours of my Cuban childhood
when my father loved to smoke a cigarette
on the patio of the house in Havana
and watch as the sheets of rain bent against
the tin roofs of the shacks in the neighbor’s
yard, the way drops hung from the wire
mesh of the chicken coops and fell one
by one on the dirt, dampening, darkening
as they fell, and he would remove his shirt,
after a long day’s work feeding the zoo,
animals and he would sit on his makeshift
hammock, lean back, blow smoke up
at the rafters, and he listened to all that rain
as it fell on everything. He imagined
it was raining all over the island, his island,
and the sound of it drumming on the plantain
fronds rose all around him like the clamor
of thousands of cattle birds scattershot
into the heavens, and when he closed his eyes
he dreamt of a man, his hands buried deep
into fertile earth, seeding a son, a wife,
in new life from which so much hardship
sprouted in this life, in the next, exile
a possibility dripping from his fingertips—
then the song of bullfrogs calling home the night.

Aguacero Poem By Virgil Suárez

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