Poem: The Many Deaths of Inocencio Rodrigues
This poem tells the story of Inocencio Rodriguez, the creator’s grandfather, who was murdered in 1971. It’s a meditation on reminiscence’s playback loop, in addition to each the particular and common violence towards immigrants and folks of shade. Rocha’s photographs are askew and arresting — the “road hangs from the sky” and summer season has darkish hair that’s “lazily in a braid” — earlier than the poem shifts to a house scene that propels us to a tragic ending and ruminates on particulars resulting in Rodriguez’s homicide. Poem Chosen by Victoria Chang
Credit score…Illustration by R.O. Blechman
The Many Deaths of Inocencio Rodriguez
By Iliana Rocha
The road hangs from the sky, held in suspension
by summer season’s darkish hair lazily in a braid,
exhausted energy strains. Somebody has thrown a pair
of sneakers, joined collectively by knots,
over the wires, insistence of we stroll away from.
Or declaration of staying’s ease. What’s gathered
overhead — recognition of a cloud-shaped damage.
Happiness received’t discover a dwelling right here,
escapes by means of every dwelling’s latticework like papel
picado chiseled down right into a pair of doves.
Hanging on the wall of my grandmother’s kitchen,
a picket scene of her kitchen, with its miniature pots & pans —
on the tiny desk, a vase of daffodils given
to her earlier than he left. This scene by no means
expands. It stays its little dimension, regardless of the trial &
need for it to broaden past is diminutive
yellow. Can we reposition La Llorona’s creek behind
one other home? What should keep pinned to the map
like a butterfly: the view, the sugar manufacturing unit the place he labored
when he ultimately modified Texas geography
to stretch all the best way to Detroit
by letting his gun comply with his steps within the grass.
Victoria Chang is a poet whose new ebook of poems is “The Timber Witness Every part” (Copper Canyon Press, 2022). Her fifth ebook of poems, “Obit” (2020), was named a New York Occasions Notable E-book and a Time Should-Learn. She lives in Los Angeles and teaches in Antioch College’s M.F.A. program. Iliana Rocha is a Tennessee-based poet whose newest assortment is “The Many Deaths of Inocencio Rodriguez” (Tupelo Press, 2022), from which this poem is taken. It’s her second ebook of poems.
New haven News – Occasions