Heath Wing

Our Mothers


My childhood was a labyrinth
I used to cross 
on my way home.


I would go in to play
and the branches and the hedge
would scratch my ankles and arms.


When I got lost
I would yell my mother’s name,
but she never answered.


That place smelled like piss,
there were plastic baggies full of white snot.


When I ran (I was afraid),

I would side step syringes
and tin foil.


Out of the four paths
I soon learned
to go down the right one.


I continued to seek it out
just for the pleasure of doing it.
I suppose like the other kids.


I also learned to dodge the branches
and to be stealthy.


I never spoke of what I saw inside,


like the rest, I suppose.


Our mothers


(now I know)


never came in to search for us. 



Translated by Heath Wing

“Our Mothers” is from the book Epidermia, (El Gaviero Ediciones, 2011), which has not yet been translated into English.


You can read and listen to the poem in the original Spanish here.