Three Poems by Juan Pablo Mobili

May 22, 2020

 

 

Losing Your Parents

 

 

Their loss is always news

even if you’ve written

heartfelt elegies already.

 

Among the stones 

Virginia Woolf packed in her pockets

I bet that two of them were

for her mother and her father

before she walked carefully

to the bottom of the world.

 

When your parents close their eyes

two moons eclipse your sun

and a distinct absence

begins to follow you

 

like a timid dog

at a certain distance

trying not to scare you

but keen on its mission

the way some animals

trace the scent of grief

 

or stones sink

the full depth of a river

 

or an orphan can tell an orphan 

across the room.

 

 

 

______________

 

 

 

The Girl in the Garden

 

for my granddaughter, Sophia

 

She likes to find small stones  

to carry

 

in the spring 

when the bees stand atop 

long stems of weed grass

 

she stops and gasps

the small stones still in her hand

 

I think she loves the garden because

she is the tallest creature there

 

 

 

______________

 

 

 

Victoria

 

to Victoria, and her victory


My grandmother belonged 

to the tribe that wanted peace


My brother and I wanted war

 

we stalked the magnolia

hunted the lemon tree

 

The only thing that was abrupt about her

was her silence

a precipice from which

our loud talk jumped off

to its death

 

She knew that patience wins sieges

so she seeded green grapes

peeled them with her fingernails

cut them in halves 

and set the bowl at the main gate

 

to appease the barbarians

 

 

______________

 

 

 

 

 

        Juan Pablo Mobili was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is an adopted son of the 

        city and state of New York. The son of a teacher and a poet, he came of age in his      

        native country during a tragic period of its history, when many thousands of young men

        and women were unconstitutionally detained, tortured, and often murdered. His poems

        carry the memory of those times, and also embrace his life in the United States, his       

        home for many years. What he loves, and what troubles him, as a citizen of one family

        and two countries bears its presence in his poems. His writing has appeared, in English

        and Spanish, in Argentina, Germany, Spain, and the United States. In addition to that,

        he released a chapbook of poems in collaboration with Madalasa Mobili, published by 

        Seranam Press, called Three Unknown Poets. 

 

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