Los Abandonados

(The Abandoned)

My mother is gone
My father too

I cannot find my sister and brother
They are hungry and do not sleep
I know because I hear them crying
Although I do not know where they are
Their sobs have the rhythm of waves
Of the sea we left behind with our childhood
In truth all I hear now
Are shutting doors
Clanging metal fences and
The sound of men’s laughter

At night I ask the darkness–
Why have you taken everyone I love?
When will this journey end that I make even in my sleep?
When will day come and hope and kindness?

I speak to the stars
Although they do not know me
Or hear me
I have a name I tell them
My sister and brother have names
Will you write them down somewhere
So I will remember
Because I am afraid
Those who have taken everything
Will take my memory too

The night so full of absence
Brings no hope or comfort
All I have
Is the touch of remembrance
And the stars weaving my story.

Arya F. Jenkins is a Colombian-American poet and writer whose poems have appeared in many journals and zines, most recently Hawaii Pacific Review, Jerry Jazz Musician, OyeDrum Magazine and Reverie Magazine. Poetry is forthcoming in The Ekphrastic Review and The Bookends Review. Her poetry has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and has been widely anthologized. She is the author of four poetry chapbooks, a short story collection, Blue Songs in an Open Key (Fomite Press), and a novel, Punk Disco Bohemian (NineStar Press). Her latest poetry chapbook is Singing in the Dark (Alien Buddha Press, 2022). Read other articles by Arya F., or visit Arya F.'s website.