Tú / You

Every so often I have an easier time expressing my thoughts in Spanish. This poem is one of those times. As an exercise, I decided to translate my poem to English, though I must admit the English version is not as melodic as the original.

— SPANISH, original —

Cerré mis ojos con tu mirada en mis pestañas
Y toque las nubes de mis sueños con las yemas de tus dedos
Dejé que el calor de tu perfume abrigara mis sentidos
Y que las plantas de tus pies cargaran el peso de mis pensamientos
Déjame llevarte a lo profundo de mi alma
Para demonstrarte el infinito de mi ser
Sólo así entenderás la cicatriz que tu amor a dejado en mi ser


— ENGLISH TRANSLATION —

I closed my eyes with your gaze weighing down my lashes
And touched the periphery of my dreams with your fingertips
I allowed the warmth of your scent to intoxicate my senses
While the sole of your feet carried the weight of my thoughts
Let me take you to the depths of my soul
So that I may show you the infinite boundaries of my being
Only then will you understand the scars left behind by your love


———

“Tú / You” by Azul Serena

Self-Interest

You claim you’re shielding me from harm
But I doubt your actions are devoid of self-interest
You lecture me incessantly about the importance of virtue
Yet I see your nightly transgressions ensconced on your lap
You flare up in anger whenever I lift my gaze from the ground
Yet I have to heed your commands to hold my head high
You condemn every man who ever comes near me
Yet I know that you pray for a suitor who’ll take me away
You say I won’t understand your firm hand until I bear my own daughter
But I don’t need to birth a child to know what it’s like to be owned

———
“Self-Interest” by Azul Serena

Pedigree

“Someone with your pedigree…”
Your words hung heavy in the air days after they traveled across the table
I fear you meant it as a compliment, how else could they be so sincere?
They weighed me down like chains tethered to my past
In ways that only lineage roots you to a name and material wealth
They dragged behind my steps like endless lines on a receipt:
The girth of my hips, the cinch of my waist,
The width of my shoulders, the sinews of my legs,
The depth of my eyes, the fullness of my lips,
The strands of my hair, the arch of my brows,
The thoughts in my mind, the degrees on my walls.
Am I thoroughbred enough for you?
Are my markings exactly those for which you search?
Or will I become another ledger neatly folded in your pocket
Perused when hope is thin and need is high?

———
“Pedigree” by Azul Serena

Ten Years Ago

I don’t feel or look older
But that picture from ten years ago says otherwise
The youthful glow of discoveries and uncertainties
Has been replaced by the graying of wisdom and experience
The sparkle of my eyes is now accompanied by dark circles
Proudly standing at attention like the neat row of ribbons
That once adorned my bedroom wall
Girlhood accomplishments that represented vanquished obstacles
If you look closely you’ll recognize each adventure etched on my face
Like the spindly roads on a map that take you anywhere and nowhere
“Expression marks” you’ll say
“Call them memories” I’ll reply
Ten years from now I’ll remember this day as I search the depths of my eyes
For clues of a past that feels so near yet is uncannily faraway
“Aging” you’ll say
“Call it Life” I’ll reply

———
“Ten Years Ago” by Azul Serena