The Forest Dweller’s Diary

7. The Marketplace

A headless hog hangs in the marketplace.

The spirits of a hundred thousand animals hover over our heads.
They perch in the rafters, whisper in the thick heat,
Dropping blessings and curses on our backs.

Blood glides through the spirit world,
Mingles with the melons and mangos,
Dives into the flesh of ripe tomatoes,
Gnaws at the tortilla mass

Blood is a birthright
A bloody mist drifts over marriage vows
Blood is life and life is fullness
And the market is full of severed life
Roasting on spits, bathing in salsa, sizzling on the grills

The dead are full of life
Since life is becoming and blood.

Babies are becoming youths becoming fornicators
Staining the hills with their seed,
A puddle of filthy generation,
Ripe as a sun-roasted corpse

From a bloodied corner in the butcher’s stand
The hog’s head winks

Alex Sager

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