harsh light carving dark tattoos in his arms, he looks across
the street to dead men in stone-carved statues;
posed there, as still
as the post he seeks shelter in,
features fleshed as granite;
one question, hurtled as spear across the empty space
one question, he asks of the stone men.
they, painted eyebrows raised, would not answer.
cars croaked like frogs, birds mocked the sun
traffic lights squinted, marking the passing of time.
they, faces plastered in bas-relief, kept their secrets
tricycles warbled, the asphalt road shimmered
and old women, clutching their rosaries
in the nearby church,
plundered the pews for prayers.
he stood there, unrelenting in his gaze, as if by doing
so he could force them to surrender;
as if by persistence, he could wrest
from them a meaning; the cigarettes in his box
have been forgotten, nothing more to sell!
the street burned, the trees bowed, the birds hid; still he gazed;
fifteen men dead and cast in stone would not speak their answer
fifteen men dead and bones scattered, unmindful of the speeches
fifteen men dead and gone, they would not answer one question:
what happens now?
i have lost my child