Ode to the Radiator

By Elisa Díaz Castelo


Called back
from sleep
and stilled,
I hear you 
breathe
beside me, 
inching forward, clicking
like the tongue of the clock,
counting 
the deformed seconds
of the insomniacs,
four fast ones,
then
one
slow
long train whistle, 
expanding time
in your nightly
wake, rudimentary
dirge. 
Subdued
dragon,
night
mare,
warhorse
armed to the teeth,
stilled armadillo,
your lined body
emits the heat
a poem should,
vapor
travels
the length 
of your alien anatomy,
steam
traverses the bouquet
of your steeled
veins. 
You are fragile
in a way
I can account for:
inside your armor
water
only
rings its bell,
mercurial, shifting
against the steel,
only water
humming 
like a swarm of bees
crisscrossing
disquiet,
silver honeycomb, 
rusty midget, 
strange accordion,
I am yet to find
a music to your seamless notes.
How you cry out
as if somewhere inside
that ribcage
a vaporous red wound,
flowered and quelled,
flowered
and quelled.
You
skeleton,
fossil 
in my room:
what are we doing here,
two sets of bones,
breathing,
side by side,
in the night? 

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About Elisa Díaz Castelo

Elisa Díaz Castelo was born and raised in Mexico. She holds an MFA from New York University in poetry and has received the Fulbright and Goldwater fellowships. She is committed to writing in both English and Spanish, and her work often meditates on the incomprehensibility that exists in the threshold of different languages and cultures. Her poems in Spanish appear in Periódico de Poesía, Los Bárbaros, and Sobremesa, among others. She recently received the FONCA fellowship for young writers and lives in Mexico City.

4 Comments

  1. Damian
    Posted January 2016 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    y…. donde esta la realidad?

  2. Cybele
    Posted January 2016 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    ¡Muchas felicidades, Elisa! Qué gran trabajo y reconocimiento. Un abrazo muy grande.

  3. Luciana
    Posted January 2016 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

    Elisa, ¡qué cosa! Muchas felicidades.

  4. Marissa
    Posted January 2016 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Very honest and anyone who has been here is right there in the poem. Deserving of the award.

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  • […] Freydburg “Chorus of Cells” Amit Majmudar “Recombinant Fairy Tale” Elisa Díaz Castelo “Ode to the Radiator” Sylvia Plath “Morning Song” Tracy K. Smith “The Nobodies” Amy Lowell […]

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