First, you confess to the mirror:
I’m having an affair.
A life sprawls upended. I
saw it coming. A terror my hands passed through
The mirror says You slut.
A text, and grateful cellos
through every cell
in the dawn of my body.
Second, you learn to purge.
Methodical and slinky
like a Soviet spy in the corrupted West
expecting a stab in the back. Guilty as charged
instructed by your stepson’s delicate eyes.
Radioactive letters startling your palm.
Third, you act normal.
Amore pasta alla vongole stasera?
You browse the aisles with biscuits and rice
Un po’ di parmigiano per favore
Nobody sees you swallowed
a crusader sword.
The stove says Enough playing with fire.
I can’t. It’s pouring outside.
Lady Judas I dare you kiss
your husband’s oleander face,
an email ticking in the back pocket of your jeans
a bomb set by an apprentice terrorist
ready to blow the skyline of dog barks
and lemon branches,
ovaries throbbing between blossoms,
the neighborhood ruptured to the quick.
I don’t know why and how we keep living
with this appetite for apocalypse.
What’s the Arabic for
Nobody loves you like I do?
Lourdes Verónica is a Moscow-born translator and teacher currently living in Rome. Her poems were featured in In My Bed Magazine (Canada), the Silver Birch Press I Am Waiting Poetry Series, Lavender Review, Window Cat Press, Winamop, Chantwood Journal, and Fable Online, as well as nominated for 2015 Pushcart Prize. Her poems in Spanish found their home in the Margen Cero Magazine.