Today I’d like to write about what I need—
not to waste time
or throw words down into gulleys
descending into my depths
naked and alone
what proofs can I give of my existence.
I am simply ugly
with freckles dreams and sores
I have two children,
and another will be born this September.
I’m not a good investment—
right away I get pregnant—
I’m number 338 123 on the i.d. card
without a photo—the children destroyed it—
or any black marks—because I don’t have any
previous convictions—large or small.
I work as a writer of programs
for a salary of 163 pesos
a career of literature
many daring poems
and friends in four categories:
normal good very bad and sad
a house that isn’t mine
a fan a comb
the balalaika that my brother gave me
the piano from my childhood concerts
a magnifier to see things more clearly
the photos of Marti and Hemingway,
books that no one stole from me yet
maps to enlarge the walls
letters from old loves
a watch a blue butterfly a heart.
and many doubts
endless doubts about my life.