The Women of Highbridge Park

Monday, July 16, 2018
It’s noon on Sunday and they gather 
around black milk crates placed in a circle 
on tattered blue fishing tarp. It’s not quite 
March, but it’s one of those fluke 
hot-weather days, and they are so prepared
for spring: swapping old records 
packed in cardboard cartons, 
daisies tucked behind their ears,
gossiping in the kind of Spanish 
from the kitchens of my past. Last night 
at the bar in a flurry of bitterness
I chucked my full beer
at the bathroom wall, then walked
the thirty blocks home. Today 
I am thinking about the significance
of grass and how I came here because I want
to get better at being a person, 
but every day I begin to know less 
about who I am to America. All I know 
is a small girl emerges from the trees 
waving a stick, hollers to her mother 
that the large scrap of rock she’s been resting on 
is lake water, bottle shards scattered 
across its surface like glittering
jagged pieces of a life. 
I have been trying more each year
to be comfortable, and maybe 
a little bit proud of how I’ve learned
to make a home, all this daylight 
kicking toward the lawn to give 
what little it owes.


Monday, July 16, 2018