once mourning doves           made me think            
of graveyards                        today              they peck      
at weed seeds             clean my land             the oldest
on record           lived thirty years          

and four months              from the time             
it was tagged              until it was shot

how many mates              did it mourn

American toads breed            at the neighbor’s pond
I wring laundry to hang            on a clothesline             mostly black

when I was eight            a man          trapped me
in the stairwell              to our New York apartment    
the note from his pocket              loose-leaf cutout           
blue ink print             said I was beautiful           a scalpel in his pocket

how many would die     in a war without weapons

I was born in the middle              of an Andean
hurricane           the first time 

I saw Mamá		her blue eyes            reflected green          
from the flame of a candle

the last time           in Florida           her eyes were shut
yesterday Aaron              and I planned   
a garden            for our new          Connecticut home            
asparagus and blueberries            can’t be harvested
for two years             seeds must avoid              hickory
taproots            cilantro has to be
direct-seeded             doesn’t like to be moved          
my sister bought her first house            after med school

lived there            twenty-five years            before renting it out
I’ve moved            twenty-five times            from rental to rental

clouds dissipate	on our ridge
we buy spades trowels pruners           window sheers

fog on the trees           lingers           coats the open grass
droplets       vaporize          burn the fog

how does one quench              an instinct              to bolt

Luisa Caycedo-Kimura is a Colombian-born writer, translator, and educator. Her honors include a John K. Walsh Residency Fellowship at the Anderson Center, an Adrienne Reiner Hochstadt Fellowship at Ragdale, and a Robert Pinsky Global Fellowship in Poetry. Her work has also been nominated for The Pushcart Prize. Luisa’s poems appear or are forthcoming in the Cincinnati Review, Sunken Garden Poetry 1992-2011, RHINO, Diode Poetry Journal, Mid-American Review, Nashville Review, the Night Heron Barks, and elsewhere.