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Monica TexasMÓNICA TERESA ORTIZ. Poeta nacida y criada en Texas (USA). Black Radish Books fue la editorial encargada de publicar su primera antología poética, titulada Muted Blood, en 2018. Su libro de crónicas, Autobiography of a semiromantic anarchist, ganador del primer Host Publications Chapbook Prize, fue publicado en marzo de 2019. Ortiz es la editora de poesía en la revista Raspa Magazine, una literata Queer Latinx y periodista de arte. Los invitamos a seguirla en Instagram como @elgallosalvaje


Like many faggots and queers before me, I am living my afterlife. Sacrificed my first when I kissed that white girl after we watched a Dallas Mavericks game on the TV in her friend’s apartment off Airport Boulevard and 45th. Gracias a Dios God didn’t strike me down when I managed to locate her lips. My mother warned my brothers that the worst sin they could ever commit was to bring home a white girl. I was 21 and as careless as a raven in an attempt to avoid wires capable of electrocuting anyone who glances them, thrown backwards in flight, struck lifeless by a miscalculation. I did not consider the consequences of unifying my authentic self with my desires until that kiss. My mama never explained why she hated white folk but I figured it was because English wasn’t her first language and her family migrated from Northern Mexico to Northern Texas just before Kennedy was assassinated. My mama ain’t the kind to forget except when I came out to her then she pulled out her shovel and buried my admission in the same grave as her childhood memories. I kept my promise to my mother. We each maintain our sovereignty. I have never brought home a woman, much less a white girl. So now we love in silence and pretend there ain’t a body buried between us.


I see tigers / I cannot eat tigers / Jorge Luis could dream them but never see them / I hope to be brave / I hope to traipse / into Playa del Mar / on a last sunrise / blow all my queerness / into stanzas / I used to think cuando callas meant when you fall / I like it better / when you are absent / in the air / shouts of faggot / as they drive past me / walking alone / on Leon and 26th Street / my skin not so electric / slurs land near me / like Dos Equis bottles / from a third story window / glossy green shards like mirrors / could be sequins / but its bleach / I am not sorry / porque yo soy un joto / we should not apologize / for what we are / never going to be


Texas used to be a sea converging shores on now corroded riverbeds in the middle of the Pedernales River I wonder how long it’ll be before them bald cypress trees will cough and die under the choke of a drought or sink underwater on ice caps fully melted and push the Gulf up past the tonsils of Galveston we keep speaking about the glass future so we can celebrate how our pioneering spirit promises us survival even as colony collapse disorder immobilizes our honey bees to extinction in extreme temperatures our rigorous fascination with digging into the lithosphere and humanity only cares about the core for its liquid gold we substitute oceans with plastic our civilization ends with fossils sealed inside the same ground where I now wait admiring the waterfall singing over bodies

of limestone.


Cuando llega la oscuridad / a dónde se va la luna / no a la tierra / la tierra es malquistada / el agua es más suave / ella se despide del sol y el cielo / quizás / se cae abajo del agua / quizás / se la comen las manos del mar / quizás / ella se amarra a una piedra / en el fondo del mar / sigue persiguiendo su voz / en el abismo con esperanza / de salvarse su presente



Si el corazón se muere,
las huellas digitales cicatrizarán las ventanas,
telarañas reemplazarán las espacios vacíos
donde la gente antes vivía.

Mortgages will be the only survivors.



All power over people is a form of violence – The Master and Margarita, Mikhail Bulgakov.

1 without sanctuary some children disappeared 2 without sanctuary some children murdered 3 without sanctuary children’s flesh become bone become obituaries become protests become footprints 4 ask me to name the dead and disappeared, I will recite names like gospel 5 sing their hymns on the horizon 6 resurrect their memories in a triptych 7 born in a generation where folks swear on the Bible but still govern like Pontius Pilate 8 sanctuary ain’t architecture of hostile design 9 ain’t slavery it ain’t plantations 10 ain’t generational infernos 11 ain’t rusty cages on Rikers Island or Angola don’t call a prison a farm when really it’s a graveyard 12 ain’t laws that are same as weapons 13 ain’t rhetoric that call us animals 14 ain’t when overseer became officer 15 kill us bury us impoverish us we will witness earth again 16 children originating from streets, from subway stations, from culverts, from hope 17 children who can bend gravity 18 ask us to prove innocence before you exile or execute us 19 ask us to repent 20 we will answer in chorus: we will not recant 21 no one will offer us protection 22 we are offered exodus instead 23 our names will be sung not as dirges but as elegies 24 we are specters 25 sometimes haunting is more necessary than mourning 26 you cannot bury all of us you will run out of sanctuary if you try 27 we are not meant to survive 28 but we will.

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