Two Poems by Maria Pascualy

At the Café, I Was Distracted

He looked like a Holbein oil
of a young Cornish merchant
with a thick beard, posed pinching a red carnation between
thumb and forefinger;
caught staring
I shoved a dollar bill into the Tipping Is Not a City in China jar
and waited at the other end of the oak counter
for my flat white served in a thick white china cup and saucer
which I then set down –
spilling half on the empty table –
beside two young men
suited in full lumberjack attire,
holding hands,
hair perfectly mohawked,
eyeing and smiling
sideways
at me.


We Park John’s Duster on the Gravel Road

and carry the cooler full of oysters to the back door
of the yellow house. A large cherry tree shades
the stairs to the kitchen, its branches weighed down

with sour fruit and a large dead crow.
In the kitchen Duane, our host, licks his ginger moustache,
and explains he shot the bird and hung its carcass as a warning
to its friends. He needs those cherries for dessert. Duane sips

Nescafé from a teacup as he shares his bird psychology.
I open a beer and use a coaster, then I go out to take a closer look.
The crow is slung upside down, its wings flapped open, its feet neatly
bound and tethered with a green nylon rope. And true – I don’t see

any other crows around. People who go feral vex me.
I walk down to the Duster, turn on the music and light up a joint.

 

Maria Pascualy grew up in Bogotá, Colombia and now lives and writes in a little white house in Tacoma, Washington. Her writing has been published in Hobo Camp Review, Pulp, Panoply, and Mulberry Fork Review.

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