Poem: Las Virgenes

To commemorate National Poetry month, here is the last of the four poems published in the Fall 2018 issue of Fifth Wednesday Journal.

Las Virgenes

Las Vírgenes

La Virgen de San Juan del Vallewas my madrina

She baptized me. Juan Diego stood in for Joseph.

She gave me candy and cookies whenever I visited. 

She and Victor, her second husband, would take 

my sisters and me to see movies. Her favorite

was “Around the World in Eighty Days”  

because it featured Cantinflas and he made her

laugh even if he too spoke only English.

La Virgen went unnoticed until the lights were dimmed

and her halo began to glow in the darkened theater.

It was embarrassing and each time my sisters and I

swore we’d never return, but we liked the free movies.

My parents wanted La Virgen de Guadalupeto baptize

me but she had no papers and could not cross the border. 

Juan Diego did immigrate, eventually, and he became

my uncle when he married Tía Rosa. He lured her 

from Fermín while Fermín was out in the fields cutting

spinach. Fermín looked like Hitchcock but walked 

like Charlie Chaplain. Se la robó, my grandmother

would chuckle: he stole her away from poor Fermín.

About juanzqui7

Former Texas reporter, columnist and editorial writer.
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