Inside of Outside
José, my undocumented brother,
steers for Kansas City in search of work.
In the rear-view mirror, his finger shakes
at a semi with gaping great white shark teeth
rising from its grill, snapping at his bumper.
Many miles later down the red clay road
three yearlings edge across a corn stubble-field,
one on three legs, bound for the red horizon.
José bows his head at the streaks of light
collocating between the speeding clouds.
At the Missouri line, an Amish buggy wheels.
Its black horses stomp the roadside gravel
into shrouding dust until José coughs.
How long must I travel? Will I find a home?
What life waits for me on the other side?
Mario Duarte: "I live in Iowa City, Iowa and am an alumnus of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. My poems and short stories have appeared in aaduna, the Arachne Press, Carnival, Chicago Literati, Corazón Land Review, Medusa’s Laugh, Slab, Huizache, RavensPerch, Steel Toe Review, and Storyscape."