Gary Soto

(1952 / Fresno, California)

Gary Soto Poems

1. How Things Work 8/17/2015
2. The Drought 2/24/2016
3. After Tonight 5/24/2016
4. Chiapas 5/24/2016
5. The Elements of San Joaquin 5/24/2016
6. Graciela 5/24/2016
7. The Jungle Café 5/24/2016
8. Late Confession 5/24/2016
9. Making Money: Drought Year in Minkler, California 5/24/2016
10. The Map 5/24/2016
11. Self-Inquiry before the Job Interview 5/24/2016
12. The Tale of Sunlight 5/24/2016
13. Teaching English from an Old Composition Book 5/24/2016
14. Mission Tire Factory, 1969 1/20/2003
15. Saturday At The Canal 1/13/2003
16. A Red Palm 1/20/2003
Best Poem of Gary Soto

A Red Palm

You're in this dream of cotton plants.
You raise a hoe, swing, and the first weeds
Fall with a sigh. You take another step,
Chop, and the sigh comes again,
Until you yourself are breathing that way
With each step, a sigh that will follow you into town.

That's hours later. The sun is a red blister
Coming up in your palm. Your back is strong,
Young, not yet the broken chair
In an abandoned school of dry spiders.
Dust settles on your forehead, dirt
Smiles under each fingernail.
You chop, step, and by the end of the first row,
You can buy one splendid ...

Read the full of A Red Palm

How Things Work

Today it's going to cost us twenty dollars
To live. Five for a softball. Four for a book,
A handful of ones for coffee and two sweet rolls,
Bus fare, rosin for your mother's violin.
We're completing our task. The tip I left
For the waitress filters down
Like rain, wetting the new roots of a child
Perhaps, a belligerent cat that won't let go
Of a balled sock until there's chicken to eat.

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