For Federico García Lorca, on All Saints’ Eve by Sarah Arantza Amador
Come, come and see, the dead adolescent! Come and see his weightless hair wave in the brine, mingle with the foam, where sea and river meet. His clear eyes reflect the approaching dawn. Come, come and see, before the tide spirits him away / Come and see the lost girls and boys sit in the sand and pass bottles of whiskey and rum, laugh and whisper, entangle their fingers in the knots in each other’s hair, their clothes, lick and nibble at each others’ necks. The woodsmoke and the dope smoke seep into the fibrous things they carry. — I am the vampire! — No! I am! They jump up and laugh, stumble and laugh. — The white boy is mine! — No, he’s mine! See the adolescent girls and boys climb like dark wildlings in the night, run across the railway trestle / One two three four /Do you feel the sweat on their palms? / One two three four / Don’t look down, don’t over-think it! Just stare down the line, into the black abyss at the end of the trestle, wreathed in eucalyptus and bougainvillea. The spirits of our ancestors are watching — can you feel them at our backs? / One two three four / One two three four / Come and see the brave boys and girls take the rails like giants. The water glints like so many eyes blinking through the gaps under their feet. / One two three four / One two three four – I am the child of the moon! – I am the daughter of the aurora! — I am the goddess queen of this whole fucking joint! / One two three four / And he is the alabaster king, the stork that drops from the sky, silently, like a stone. He falls down and up at once, out of the ether, into the firmament. / See the water ripple, behold the swallowing maw. / While the submerged body struggles, to swim, to break through the thin membrane of the water’s surface or the thin membrane of the celestial veil—what is up and what is down? There is boldness and hubris in this moment, ecstasy. The drunk girls and boys crow with pride, with joy, and strip like warriors as the thread tethering the white boy to them snaps, the thread tethering him to the living snaps, how long does it take them to realize that he’s gone? How long does it take them to find him? / Come and see, see the bold girls and boys congregate like sad vultures – one two three four – against the dawn, hover in their flight, stare down at the drowned adolescent. Come and see them, come and smell them, their fear, their sadness, lost boys and girls at dawn.
Residing in the Santa Cruz Mountains of Northern California with her dog Roscoe and person Richard, Sarah Arantza Amador writes about longing, ghost-making, the endearment of monsters, and the twists and turns of human loving kindness. Her work is featured in Best Microfiction 2019 and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She tweets @ArantzaSarah and sometimes blogs from www.saraharantzaamador.com.
Photo by Hunter Bryant