Alex Salinas

Lingering rainstorm, September 2018


Hear it,

this lingering rainstorm like a lover’s goodbye.

Remember it,

breezy and gray like a Russian’s eye.


Visit the cemetery.

Kneel by your grandfather’s grave.

Tell him dirty jokes.


Then stop by Wu’s for fried rice.

Say a prayer before your meal.

Taste your dripping self in the steamy grains.

Say a prayer after your meal.


The humidor should still be open; buy a cigar.


Return to the cemetery.

Kneel by your grandmother’s grave.


Light your cigar.

Puff it carefully.

Drift away, slowly.

Apologize to Grandma for smoking in her presence,

though she smoked her whole life.


Appreciate the soaking your skin’s endured.

You’ll realize later you won’t need to shower.


But don’t be fooled for one second.

No flood can wash away your color,

your blood.


You’re like a star unable to hide from the cosmos.


One day,

you’ll tear a black hole in the fabric surrounding you

like a knitter with a shaky hand.



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