Visions of Colombia
tatiana de la tierra

You exist in a mist.

wet with glacial liquid
scented with frailejón
slumbering like just-loved women.
Waters lapping every coast
sloshing boulders big as homes.
Oceans with island fingers
Diamond waterfalls
Rivers that look like lightning
from above

Your too many fruits intoxicate me
hairy and nutty chontaduros
slimy and crunchy granadillas
fuzzy lulos that taste like lemons
marahcuyas that bite like desire
salty green mangos
fat-seeded zapotes
queenly piñas

My too many images are only mine
sitting on a burlap sack filled with iguanas
riding a mule so long my legs numbed
kissing a horse on the nose
pissing on a tarantula
praying you’d never leave me

To others, you’re
Juan Valdéz
Chiquita Bananas
cocaine kingpins
Colombian Gold
beauty queens
café con aroma de mujer
one hundred years of solitude

Nobody knows you like I do
jeeps jamming through the countryside
cheap aguardiente in tiny cantinas
mochilas stitched with Arhuacan wisdom
scallions as long as my arm
McDonald’s debuting in Bogotá
rusted machetes
tired horses
lost cities

Wherever I am,
my tongue squirms
sticks to the roof of my mouth

If it weren’t for your emerald mountains
I wouldn’t even speak

19 de marzo de 1998, el paso, tejas
Published as:

de la tierra, tatiana. “Visions of Colombia: A Love Poem.” La Casa del Hada Fall-Spring 2001-2002: 28.