To the Smog-Filled Sun Beams of Santiago de Cuba

by Sarah Felder


Children line up asking for gifts–

They gleam in their dirty American
Don’t worry someone will take you home
Tonight: feed you the American way, love
You the American way: through money, through
Candy, and through camera lenses.
The social clubs are home to old ghosts dancing
They forgot where they parked their cars after
A few too many gin martinis, whirling olives.
I collect their reassuring winks, put their memories
Into clickable slides, hold their faces in sea shells
And dead coral.
You can’t take a picture of this:
Sun bleached blue, yellows and whites,
The salt tarnished sea-wall on the high-way,
The undiluted smell of the pescatarian eateries:
Grotesque still-swimming shrimp are pulled
Open in the faces of the hung-over and the hungry.
The syllables of this love-blood, this price
To pay. I learn their phonics slowly, at first
My only concern is the tint and stench of it
All. Self-words like rib-eye for everyone.
I never
Knew how charming of a word it could be,
The notion of being here equal, the visible
Sweat of the liberal agenda on my brow—
I’m not the sun-streaked paste I was assigned;
Yet I have to say, Castro, this life
Seems fleeting. The good man and the bad man
Here become the same thing in the dim-light

Of government.

[author ]I grew up on Martha’s Vineyard off the coast of Massachusetts. I love poetry, and always have, something about the cadence of it. I attend APU as a Liberal Studies: Literature major. [/author]

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