Sophia Rivera Spring-Double Issue

by Sophie Rivera 

Girasoles 

 

Light green fades into dark
as beads hang from mismatched hooks

they are the stems of the
yellow turned orange
upside-down sunflowers
I wear fiercely on my ears
when I’m trying to make sense
of the fogginess in my own brain

Through my repeated
stuttering words
my girasoles have a way
about them
guiding me
out of the forgotten places 

Well they give color to my dark days
they give me warmth too
and I don’t feel so lost
they are my ofrenda
to the patron saint
of best friends
 

Reminding me
of my amiga
por vida
Milagros
the miracle of the
girasol memories
of the day we decided to be best friends
and I discovered she lived across the street
on summit

 

How we would meet next to the cucaracha
for a bag of hot Cheetos with lemòn
or gather our change
to share a raspado
on days so hot
the heat
lingered into the evening

 

We’d stay up
gossiping about our sisters and their love
liveswondering when the boy down the street
would ride by on his bike

 

When he didn’t pass
there was always the elotero
the only constant
we knew to count on
to swap our adventure stories for an ear
of corn

 

Nothing could catch us
from jumping fences to running from Lalo’s dogs
from her mom
or laying in the middle of the dimly lit street at night
to look up at the stars
listen to oldies
dance to cumbias

 

And she listened
to the story of my world falling apart
so when she had to moveI asked her what her favorite flower was
and before she left
she proclaimed “Girasoles!”
because it is like carrying the sun
and we
we are the sun

 

 

A Body of Work

 

Soon I will come home
to my mother’s heartbeat-
It is the sound of waves
rolling into one another
softly meeting for an
instant embrace
as the current
roars just below the surface
like the ones that will greet you
on a late Sunday afternoon at
Bolsa Chica beach. 

 
And it is a song that has been grown,
from her mother’s womb
and her mother’s, mother’s womb.
She is our first mother
the ocean.
Because we came from the water. 

 

They all exist inside of me
inside this heart the size of my fist.
I want to see my heart expand
so I stretch my hand
wide, spread my fingers,
examine the ways
in which I resemble
my mother’s strength. 

 

I don’t know if I will ever work as hard
as that woman
but I pray to creator everyday
that the skin on my hands and knuckles
split and tear the way my mother’s do. 

 
She holds my indulgent hands, soft,
between hers, rough and lived,
she laughs at me- 

 

You’ve never worked a day in your life. 
 

I want to tell her
that picking up the pen
taking it to paper
to remember all the stories
that only I can tell
is a labor
so scary
it is what makes me
most alive.
Instead I laugh with her
because I know
what I know.

Sophia Rivera(she/her) is a Chicana storyteller, scholar, and writer from Northwest Pasadena, Califas. Her writing explores ancestral and embodied memory, inter-generational trauma, healing, and decolonial love. She has been published in the Coiled Serpent: Poets Arising from the Cultural Quakes in Los Angeles Anthology by Tia Chucha Press, Hometown Pasadena Magazine, the International In the Words of Women Anthology and her co-written essay, Passing the Sage was featured in the Chicana/Latina Studies Journal.

Sophia Rivera(she/her) is a Chicana storyteller, scholar, and writer from Northwest Pasadena, Califas. Her writing explores ancestral and embodied memory, inter-generational trauma, healing, and decolonial love. She has been published in the Coiled Serpent: Poets Arising from the Cultural Quakes in Los Angeles Anthology by Tia Chucha Press, Hometown Pasadena Magazine, the International In the Words of Women Anthology and her co-written essay, Passing the Sage was featured in the Chicana/Latina Studies Journal.

Routine is Good by Spring-Double Issue

 

by A.I. Ramos

ROUTINE IS GOOD

 

cling to routine because it’s safe for the child inside
that was always yelled at for not folding towels in the designated position
dishes left in sink
vodka or wine stench crawling the walls and screeches
become routine
but this routine isn’t good
it isn’t safe
not safe at all
so the child makes a new one where cleaning,
scrubbing the shower the sink the toilet the walls
will rid the stench and unpredictability.
maybe safe can come back now once everything is in order

 

Andrea Lacey She/Her A.I. Ramos is an inter sectional feminist, environmentalist, and proud latinx. She holds a BA from Cal State University Northridge in Creative Writing and Literature and is currently pursuing an MA from Eastern New Mexico University online in English. She released her first poetry collection, Gritty, in 2019.

Andrea Lacey She/Her A.I. Ramos is an inter sectional feminist, environmentalist, and proud latinx. She holds a BA from Cal State University Northridge in Creative Writing and Literature and is currently pursuing an MA from Eastern New Mexico University online in English. She released her first poetry collection, Gritty, in 2019.