Alexis Almeida

Anchovies

With little effort, the taste of salt. A woman placed them there, trees shook. My mouth is a causeway. My olive green face, the problem. I cannot cross a room without becoming at least three deciduous colors. I cannot move gracefully, I am blind. Algae grows in the mountains, it hurts. The slimy exterior of skin. A tree's third phase of life. Fanning toward the clouds, her pride. I fear they are indigestible, my wound. Traveling in schools. Giant shadows from above. Cannot swim against the current, their food. A body swelling in water. They open as you pass. Someone is listing on paper. My uncle, my cousin. My grandfather, my pores. You should live freely, someone speaks. Salt between wood and mirrors. My smallest ventricle. My Portuguese grandfather, his Colombian wife. Placed in a photograph. Take inside my substance. Sit down to dinner, a book of distant coastlines. Little by little they are disappearing, we say.

Alexis Almeida's poems, translations, and interviews have appeared or are forthcoming in Prelude, Gulf Coast, Oversound, Denver Quarterly, Action Yes, and elsewhere. She is an assistant editor at Asymptote. Her chapbook of poems, Half-Shine, is forthcoming from Dancing Girl Press, and her translation of Florencia Castellano's Propiedades vigiladas is recently out from Ugly Duckling Presse. She is the recipient of a Fulbright research grant, and is currently living in Buenos Aires.