Where I Enter and You Exit

by Dorsía Smith Silva

My son sees me stark naked / for the first time and asks me with crisp eyes / what are those / those are the slim orbs / that feed you / the ones that your father / used to palm like silver-spoon fruit / but now looks at / as ruptured ruins / he backs away / like a pull-string puppet / like when children played tag with me / no one wants to be it / it’s torture / like / picking your favorite lolly / or when your father asks you / to save one pig on the farm / the rest will be bacon / for breakfast / a backwards joke / but how / is a child of five / to know better / I cannot numb your question / wring my mind empty / or / paint over the walls / of all that is missing / I can only speak of our depletions / twinned in the backyard / like / flowers ghosted into spring — Dorsía Smith Silva is a Professor of English at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras. Her poetry has been published in several journals and magazines in the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean, including Portland Review, Mom Egg Review, Stoneboat, Atlantis: Critical Studies in Gender, Culture & Social Justice, Moko Magazine, and elsewhere. She is also the editor of Latina/Chicana Mothering and the co-editor of six books.   Photography by: Hennie Stander