Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Two Poems for Peru: An Old Adobe House in Acolla and A Love Poem for Huancayo

An Old Adobe House in Acolla

(An forenoon in Acolla.)

What is so strange about an old adobe house in the middle of a city?
It is thick bricks of mud. I walk around and around them.
The mind is strangely torn, and cannot leave them.
At last I rest, lean back against one.

It is a small corner adobe house, across from the Plaza de Arms.
Its old windows and bricks surround me, enmesh me,
Brown bricks, with pale green chipped wooden doors and windows.
Only the sounds of brass horns from the church distract me.

The sun is chilled, trying to burn through an opening in the sky.
The plaza area, its surrounding streets are being renovated.
Why then do I care to watch…
The sun moving onto the chilled bricks of the adobe house?

The morning shall never end, I think:
I have eyes it seems only born for the daylight;
But at last, the quiet streets fill up with church people,
And my eyes see far off, as the Acolla bands ready themselves.

# 1943. When I visited Acolla, Peru, during an August Fiesta, my wife and I walked around the city, and ended up on the corner of an old adobe brick house, across from the Plaza de Arms. The morning sun was breaking in the day, and the poem I write reflects this morning, until the church lets out, and the bands take over the plaza area with their brass horns, and assortment of musical instruments. Written 8-20-2007

A Love Poem for Huancayo

When we love, really love
We love the old adobe homes
The rivers, mountain, the old folks
And the Plaza Fountain—
And the streetlights
That is abandoned all night!
And the dogs that sleep with one eye!

When we love, really love
We love the hovering pigeons:
In the Plaza de Arms (by the Cathedral)
The winds of July and August
And the chill at twilight
And the abandoned children—
Those walk the streets at night!

# 1944 (8-21-2007 Written El Tambo, Huancayo)


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