Sunday Poem

Asking Questions of the Moon

….. Some blind girls
….. ask questions of the moon
….. and spirals of weeping
….. rise through the air

      …..  —Federico Garcia Lorca

As a boy, I stood guard in right field, lazily punching my glove,
keeping watch over the ballgame and the moon as it rose
from the infield, asking questions of the moon about the girl
with long blond hair in the back of the classroom, who sat with me
when no one else would, who talked to me when no one else would,
who laughed at my jokes when no one else would, until the day
her friend sat beside us and whispered to her behind that long hair,
and the girl asked me, as softly as she could: Are you a spic?
And I, with a hive of words in my head, could only think to say:
Yes, I am. She never spoke to me again, and as I thought of her
in the outfield, the moon fell from the sky, tore through the webbing
of my glove, and smacked me in the eye. Blinded, I wept, kicked
the moon at my feet, and loudly blamed the webbing of my glove.

by Martín Espada
W.W. Norton & Company, 2021