martes, 7 de marzo de 2017

ROY G. GUZMÁN [19.998]


ROY G. GUZMÁN

Roy G. Guzmán nació en Honduras y creció en Miami, FL. Candidato al grado de MFA en escritura creativa por la Universidad de Minnesota, su trabajo ha aparecido o es de próxima aparición en Assaracus, Juked, The Adroit Journal, Breakwater Review, Word Riot, Reservoir, Connotation Press, y Notre Dame Review. Roy es el editor de poesía para Sundog Lit y ha sido galardonado con una nominación al Pushcart prize y una mención honorífica en ficción del Gesell Award. Este verano servirá como Escribano para los Derechos Humanos en la Universidad de Minnesota, concentrándose en asuntos que afectan a los migrantes trabajadorxs del campo. Para conectarse: roygguzman.com; Tuíter: @dreamingauze 



Mural restaurado para Orlando

Segundos antes de que el tirador rociara balas sobre los cuerpos de mis
hermanos & hermanas / el DJ detiene los giros del disco de vinilo / & estoy interesado

en ese breve destello de luz rosada / cómo se esparce por las camisas
planchadas hasta tornarse púrpura / cómo una pistola es tan sólo un corazón que se ha olvidado

de cantar. El arrobamiento en los ojos de un extraño / una postura franca ante la resurrección.
Visitas Orlando para fantasear sobre la infancia que no tuviste /

aunque yo haya crecido en la Florida el viaje es un lujo porque crecí
pobre & cuando finalmente me alcanzó para pagarlo llevé a mis padres a los Universal

Studios / fue la primera vez en mi vida que vi a mi madre subirse a una montaña rusa
porque siempre se ha avergonzado de su peso & por error terminamos

comprando un tiempo compartido / bueno no realmente por error / pero por ilusión mía
de que mis padres han trabajado muchísimo en los EEUU así que se merecían

sus vacaciones / & los prestamistas nos siguen llamando tras todos estos años para recordarnos
de la Gran Recesión en la que mi madre perdió su empleo & mi padre

tuvo que jubilarse temprano. Nuestras madres nos dieron nombres
para que supiéramos lo que lleva el encabezado de una lápida / resumen desnudo /

& nuestro deber es sentir el aislamiento que cualquier alineación de letras puede causarnos
cuando están inscritas con pesar / ya que muchos de nosotros nacimos o florecimos

del dolor como cisnes siempre doblegados en el estanque o en cuentas por pagar /
como si estuviéramos pescando claves sobre nuestras tumbas / o donde

extraviaremos nuestra humedad en los cuellos de otros. & justo la noche antes había ido
a la Noche Drag de Lush con otros cuatro poetas / una razón para escapar

de mi rutina & revivir mi adolescencia / me da miedo ir a lugares
que celebran nuestros cuerpos porque es ahí también donde nuestros cuerpos

han sido cancelados / cuando eres moreno & gay siempre te estás muriendo
dos veces / pude ver trece números de amateurs / unos cuantos invitados especiales /

una queen que estaba haciendo una parada en Minneapolis / una sensación
nacional / & la MC cantó una versión ronca pero virtuosa de “When You’re

Good to Mama” & los chicos & las chicas & lxs fems se alineaban con sus billetes de dólar /
que las queens se guardaban en sus perfectos pechos o con sus dientes

& me giré a Danez & le dije que el show completo me recordaba
cuando recibía la comunión de niño / cómo para mí una iglesia es un techo

que siempre se está desplomando / aunque tal vez estuve hablando sobre
amantes que rinden sus condolencias / tan a menudo olvidamos que lo que nos mata ahora

alguna vez creyó en nuestra supervivencia / que una pistola & un rifle separados
pueden crear la figura de tus brazos cuando jalas a un amante hacia ti / que cuando sus

dientes están ennegrecidos quiere decir que escogiste la botella correcta de Sauvignon /
que en nuestros videojuegos uno puede montar una bala hacia la eternidad.

***

Le han pedido a mi pareja que cante en la vigilia de Loring Park. Su coro
ha encargado una pieza de una hora inspirada por “Two Boys Kissing”

de David Levithan / en la que un par de adolescentes participan en un maratón
del beso para establecer un nuevo Récord Mundial Guinness. Un coro griego de almas

que no serán vencidas por la epidemia / encuentra consuelo al narrar los trágicos
aunque verdaderos eventos. ¿Cómo podría cantar durante toda una hora sobre semejante pesar

sin romper en llanto durante mi interpretación? mi pareja me pregunta
mientras actualizo las noticias. Al teléfono / mi madre dice que el odio del tirador

se desató al ver a dos hombres besarse en Bayside Marketplace en
el corazón de Miami / & estoy pensando en que es muy probable que mi madre nunca apruebe

que yo oprima mis labios contra los de otro hombre sin que ese hombre sea
mi padre o una traducción inexacta de él / porque incluso nuestros padres han orado

al menos una vez para que desaparezcamos / Tú no eres mi hijo, maricón. En Bayside
tomé de la mano a un antiguo amante antes de mudarme a la universidad / la luna sobre

el agua como una herida que no habría de sanar / & me botó poco después /
dijo que no podía con el dolor de mi partida / lo cual cuando envejeces

lo clasificas como un dolor necesario que te entrenó para cuándo abrirte & cerrarte
como una casa donde sólo huracanes traspasan / o promesas precipitadas.

Orlando como una naranja / ahora verde con moho / pero aún comestible para algunxs.
La tarde del tiroteo / después de cenar con amigxs que con no morir están

honrando a sus muertxs / llego a casa para tocar el cuerpo sofocante de mi pareja /
una húmeda tarde de junio sin aire acondicionado en Minnesota / lejos de la masacre

pero suficientemente cerca para sentirla / & producimos sonidos de bebé / un ahn de testigo /
un ahn de esperanza / mientras le damos forma al hijo despreocupado de la vulnerabilidad

que corre entre nosotros por las tardes / seguro pero en parte perdido / hasta que mi amante
se duerme & yo me quedo despierto por necesidad & sigo murmurando sus nombres

mientras se suman a la lista / como los rostros en las aguas de un río bautismal. He perdonado
a la tierra por no torcer su cuello un poco más / por no permitir que esas luces rosadas

sigan destellando / dejar que siga intacto el parloteo sin importar qué tan ruidoso.
En esos segundos cuando sus pieles nunca han destellado tan brillantes / tan seguras de

sí mismas / el bartender está agitando una piña colada / la piel de gallina florece
en los brazos de alguien / las calles zumban de placer / un par de amantes

entra / otro ansiosamente espera la última llamada de la noche. Pareciera que
el disco de vinilo quiere seguir girando mientras limpiamos su sangre del piso.

Por ellxs aprendemos a tocarnos otra vez. Por ellxs caminamos a casa / & nos cuidamos.


TRADUCCIÓN DE MARCO ANTONIO HUERTA)
El poema se publicó originalmente como Restored Mural for Orlando en Public Pool: http://www.publicpool.org/dope/text/roy-g-guzman/






Roy G. Guzmán is a Honduran-born writer. Raised in Miami, he is the recipient of a 2016-2017 Minnesota State Arts Board grant, the 2016 Gesell Award for Excellence in Poetry, two Pushcart prize nominations, four Best of the Net nominations, and a 2015 Gesell Award honorable mention in fiction. He has been featured in Kenyon Review, Verse of April, and The Best American Poetry Blog. Roy holds degrees from Dartmouth College, the University of Chicago, and the Honors College at Miami Dade College. In 2015, Roy was awarded a GRPP Graduate Research Fellowship to investigate trauma caused by violence in and migration from Honduras. In 2016, he was the recipient of a Scribe for Human Rights Fellowship, focusing on issues affecting migrant farm workers in Minnesota. That same year, he was chosen to participate in the fourth Letras Latinas Writers Initiative gathering, sponsored by Letras Latinas, the literary initiative at the University of Notre Dame's Institute for Latino Studies, in partnership with the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing and the MFA Program at Arizona State University. He also participated in the first Poetry Incubator, sponsored by Poetry Foundation and Crescendo Literary. After the Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, his poem “Restored Mural for Orlando” was turned into a chapbook with the help of poet and visual artist, D. Allen, to raise funds for the victims.

Roy currently lives in Minneapolis, where he is pursuing an MFA in creative writing at the University of Minnesota.




FINDING LOGIC IN A CRUSHED HEAD

                   for Pilingo

It is not a fallacy that the pulpería owner who wakes up
dressed in a tunic of warriors’ pelos or the milkman

pressing his rough hands against the cow’s tectonic body
remembers the skirted boy with ovarian lipstick for a tongue,

the boy who offered a tenth of his knees to the teeth
of a country with dentures. Because I have lifted my legs

to examine what birds will leave in abandoned nests. Because
I have lifted my hands from the chests of shipwrecked men

who’ve turned the seas into inconsolable lovers with
a misguided orgasm. Or perhaps the pulpería owner—skin

brown and preternatural as an Arizona bark
scorpion on sawdust—will stop laughing one day at the boy

who, before Death settled upon his ashy limbs and his elbows
were triangulated by exile’s amplitude, helped me capture

those polysyllabic butterflies one pins, before nightfall,
to the cruelty of one’s ambitions. The boy’s fine head rested

on the tracks before the train trampled it like masa mix rolled
with an aunt’s hands on an oven, as he tried to cross the border.

Moths stuck to the dictionary of the pulpería slimeball’s mouth,
as an ulcered sun rose from his dry lips. Divinatory wings

in the rusted nail geometry of a bullet hole. Our abuelas taught us
to run like blind ghosts in a backyard. My ancestors

have crimpled wooden doors with their hands, the men have,
and there is no remedio for the hummingbirds a mother casts

from an aghast mouth, the tongues gone missing—those
witnesses of railroads, carnations for the wounded. A new truth

flits among the flame anisacanthus, aquilegia, firebush,
among the Angel’s-trumpets. My vacancies know boundless

absence. I have seen the eyes of hummingbirds blink backwards,
when direction was once read as a declaration for agency. And, yet,

not all milkmen can know how the wretched can live off spoilage.
Ask me where to find need. I am ringmaster of my own sinkings.

Listen to a reading of “QUEERODACTYL IV” by Roy G. Guzmán.



QUEERODACTYL IV

After they find and excavate your wing-fossils,
perseverance might be the trait you’ll be known for.
How swiftly you sloped downwards to pick up
the carcasses floating just above the bloodstained
surface of your old neighborhood. In the laboratory,
the paleontologists will use radiometric dating
to zoom into what bequeathed you that agency to fly.
This one might have outlasted all the others,
they’ll say. Might have even seen each one disappear
behind a bolt of fire blasted from who knows where.
Or you might have been the first to vanish, directly in
the way of the asteroid’s course. Who will, in the end,
exhume our myths conclusively? A young angel’s bones,
shaped just like yours, were uncovered this morning.
A group of diggers hadn’t found anything exciting
for months—in jeopardy of losing all their funding.
I, too, have buried myself under the heavy presence
of change, from a longing, perhaps, to find my remnants,
or their profiles, in places where curious strangers
might prize them. Church is anything with a pair of
wandering hands and a bucket. I, too, have questioned
the usefulness of finding a body stuck in that perpetual,
near-flight position, arms extended like the incandescence
from a lamppost at night—and wished it be mine.



Queerodactyl VI

Mother is anti-devolution, present past unfuture,
& we’re at that stage where eating spoiled flesh
is like going to Las Vegas—mercurial swim-
ming pool of naked bodies. Outside, cop is ash,
cop is unopened bag of glitter you take back
to Wal-Mart for a refund. What do you call a corpse
the ocean’s forgotten to bring back? So much
is layaway canticle, mended whisper, faux pas
de bourrée, braided feathers—it’s no wonder
Spanglish is caged thunder, oblivious certitude
of orchids. Believe the coffee grounds when they
speak of banana plantations. Before we left the house,
our mothers should’ve warned us of mirrors
paginated like bibles. The beat under the floor
invertebrate possibility waiting to blast, armoire
with dresses befitting queens, salacious cinderellas,
when we were laid, fist came before the egg.
Today, no broom is back-broken. Mother is howl
unshuddered slats. That moment when the diggers
can hear the infant cry of desperation under the city
rubble. We run for the exit, but we’re really running
for the interior kingdom of fossils, how tenderly
my mother paired the socks & tied them by the neck.




Queerodactyl VII

Woke up like strangulated terracotta     empress.     Woke up like
                measled fantasia sewage.     The goldmines are revamped.
We’ve defaulted on our loans.     Self-portrait as co-     opted ravine.
                Dish-washing roaches in mold.     This song has blown
piñatas, conga lines     of those disappeared.     Why won’t you gob
                your empathy for this killing?     We believe in mortal
flight     & so our deaths are suspended,     obedient escalade.
                We rummage through Icarus’ bravery as if we weren’t ourselves
tumbling     through the meteorological chaos     of our ancestry.
                I have stared into the eyes     of someone with borrowed skin,
borrowed name,     servant to the wrong     verge of the river.
                She knotted her hair     to the strobe lights,     as gaffs passed
her body undeterred.     Later,     she smeared her gloom
                on the outside walls     of the earth.     Some will say
that is how history begat history.     I’ll say
                glory to fate’s incorrigible nature     & towards which
we violently stroll.




Marsh

The shame of a shadow
can only be judged in the murk.
His chest was a neon
calliope when he
spoke in the hut.
I followed the maze
on the alligator’s snout,
oranges in place of teeth,
thousands of teeth
leading to the marsh.
The flood from my mother’s
mouth pruned my feet.
I peeled my lips for dinner,
the deer in my stomach
slept. Planets fell
like guavas upon the
roof, asking to be
let into the heart’s cell.
You break the spell
whenever you yawn
mantelpieces.
Sometimes I fear the light
more than the shadows’ tongues.




Metal

My beau sets off alarms at the airport.
He came back from a war
America replays inside arabesque bedrooms.
As a rule, he makes love to me when he needs
extra-virgin oil around his shoulders,
my own echoes dishes shattering inside his chest.
He shot a child in the face. Shoots him every night
around the same time, though the child is now
older, and my beau has come to realize
why the headless child resembles him.
He says he’s got a little money saved. He says he wants
to buy a ranch somewhere in Wisconsin (he’s never
travelled there). He wants the Pantagruelian pots
slamming against the pans
contained by the bitter frost of the North.
It’s not that I hear a man breaking down
when he’s most passionately expressing his tin
obsessions. It’s that the dishes fall,
I’m suddenly ten, and I can’t pick them up
fast enough when they pour out of the cupboard,
my baby fast asleep:
a winding clock with snakes to tell time.



The Fighter of Nortune

How many versions of you can there be?
Multi-million deals, virtual genealogies,
monstrous Hollywood handprints,
the aphasic on suicide missions.

In a discounted edition of the world,
you lead the invasion.
A three-hundred-million-year-
old princess is offered as down payment —

your skin oozes its trademark phlegm.
When was the last time the government
loaned you a pair of corrective lenses
to fight?

Like Samson, pull the pillars to the ground.
But give the guests sufficient time to leave
the rave. In red solitude
the hero can adjust to his own reputation.



Jungian

Hogs commune in an open field
to decide your fate.

The course of reincarnation
is the reenactment of Cain’s decapitation
of his brother’s flock
because God — too — looks away.

The pigs mumble under their stitches.

Fei practices variations of punches
on a board of Scrabble,

his two-dimensional frame rotating
and rotating until parts of his innocence
are sacrificed to the wild wiring

behind the television.

One god pulls a screw
from his chest
and offers it to his son,
who wears it as an earring.

The hogs misbehave in pixels.

Even martyrs
reject the thought of a comeback.



MUSEUM FOR THE ASKING

The heart can only lament in cuneiform. Blunt
carvings on a clay tablet, which, independent
of their malformations, settle on the material

                  for anachronistic scrutiny. The heart
in prefix—like a warrior’s sharpened teeth
around the necks of the enemy.
Boot prints on plantain leaves; Morse code
of spears for the unquenchable defeat—
            hypotenused, stiff.

A temple of orchids
                     overlooks a mass grave of temples,
                     as two figures flee from each other
because they are what’s left of sustenance.
Hearts on chapped lips;
                      sun’s inversions. The archeologist
disinters the tablets—telling his therapist
                                        it’s the rocks he’s after.



FORAMINA

On our first dates, I drag his body
aimlessly across damaged cornfields.

A returning heartbeat could fester a romance.

We head out to the industrial
sector of the city, our preferred hangout
spot to growl at each other

lines from Law & Order, Great Expectations—
anything by Eliot or David Foster Wallace.

Inside chicken coops,
before the bus arrives, I inject him
with massive transfusions of false recollections.

Fellow passengers on the bus envy me.
He barks at them, & they feed him glances.

As we sit at the churrascaria, he drools
on his Christmas sweater over another
ripped divorcé—a war survivor, this time.

My boyfriend hunts
for casualties in the restroom,
as the waiter decants holy water in my glass.

I squeeze shards between my palms of his broken moon
for the werewolves to remember.

When death returns from the restroom,
he pulls out a credit card ridden with maggots—
asks the server if they accept
American Express or Discover.

Try killing a flesh-eating man-shadow
& the patriarchy will hurl him back to life

in your poems. He will thank Jesus
for the Last Supper. He will linger
long after decomposition.

I confidently carve holes in his chest
without his attention for detail:

Holes in the shape of cruise ships to the Bahamas.
Holes like family
reunions in Nevada.

In every cavity of his body
I place reminders of who I am—
he won’t read them.

As we promenade home from the movies,
after catching a flawed remake of a classic,

the moon sheds its clinical
surveillance over our skins.

There will be sequels, he gripes
the last time I understand him.

On his dead lap, I plant sesame
seeds before resting my head. A fly
buzzes inside our bedroom.

The dead, too, can wish to die anew.

                          

CASUALTIES OF ART

                  A plane crashes into a bike. The front part of the bike lands in a river; the back, in
a desert of glass. No one survives.

                  The clouds swarmed the sky like emerald cobras. The gray choked
                                     on our prayers for rain.

                  I would relinquish my thousand masks
                  to seal the pits in my mother’s smile.

                                      Near the site of the crash, a vulture perches on a desiccated branch.
                                                                                                                                                           By sundown,

both collapse into ash.



MIDWESTERN SKULLS FOR THE BROKEN LATINO

People who crave the jaw
& not the fox’s gentle tail—
         his land mine

           of teeth; a temporary exit
for those who yearn to return to the coyote’s
                 tent to reclaim their belongings—
the chopped head, the neck
before it was plucked from the rest of the body
like a hen’s for dinner. Antique shops 

         for raccoons’ clawed feet;
                                                    a necklace
for a woman in labor. After the snow melts
the dead return to their natural habitats—
eyes barely shut under the charcoal, whiskers
                                   trapped in the pinecones.
Some secrets are better rolled into the mouths

          of strangers
          when they sleep. A father can make up
suffering’s seasons: leave in the afternoon,
then sneak in through a windowless frame— 

though these, too, can be called winter & fall
          & held by a child’s contemptuous hands
in a garden where only the wind
can be torn from branches.   

                                             Did they really mean
to leave us shipwrecked—those sailors
who recognized flesh but not what the flesh
                                    can camouflage? People covet

the mandible as it’s handed down
          for all to drink from. In his hands
I appear dead—
but here, here in my chest, is where my father
           finds the new continent

           of directions measured in forgiveness.
I sleep in the wilderness,
like a fox loitering in a frozen meadow,
                                         & I’ll feed him forgiveness
                                                                    if he asks.





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