My mom reconstructed our lives from junk.
Unbleached cardboard Orisha beaded masks,
Glass-shard mosaics of proud Mary’s face,
A twisted crown of bottle caps and barbed wire,
Found relics, littered our tar-paper house,
Each objet d’art, a fetish, meant to stave
The shame of being poor. We ate, each night,
On painted plates of resurrecting suns.
She formed so much what others tossed away.
Now I scrounge through virtu and bric-a-brac,
The scattered trifles of remembrances,
To find her, traceless, gone. My soul sets bare.
Unfit to curate memory, I house
No rags, no cracked cups, no heart, fit for pawn.