This poem is taken from Stand 217, 16(1) March - April 2018.

Ricardo Pau-Llosa Three Poems

Garden of the Hotel Milvia, San José, Costa Rica

The last vendor’s cry in Latin America
moves east behind the thick hedge –
el aguacaté verde, el aguacaté
shifting the accent from the proper ca
to the final to give his sung pitch
a foot as much in music as in language.
His shuffling soles provide a jazzy curtain
to his errant refrain, and then of a sudden
he stops. It seems a buyer has approached,
but this cause the quiet must surmise,
as with art whose maker’s bent we theorise
from our confines, our sense of self projected.
Could pause alone be art’s intent, the way
leaves desire to leave their hearts in grey?

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