Mother in the Mirror

my mother talks to the mirror,

she speaks in radiances
of distant missals,

the house dwindles

she combs her
white straw hair
which she has lost
and grown back several times
unlike her left breast,
once black and purple and hard,
like impossible life
or a cursed mammal,
and now a barren suture
that splits across her chest,
the mark of a theft
the trace of a blade

a spatial paradox:
it stands above the cesarean
scars my own birth left her

I lay my head on her chest,
and I feel lost and hungry

the mirror talks back,
talks back,
talks back

my mother redraws her eyebrows
upon her darkened,
hyperpigmented face

sadness glimmers
like the tremor of a dying sun

she suddenly portents
a rare beauty,
a translucent magnificence
that replenishes the empty holes
in her eyes,

and I must watch her go
like the a lost first love


Elidio La Torre Lagares's picture

Elidio La Torre Lagares has published four poetry collections, two of which are available in electronic format: Vicios de construcción (Construction Vices) and Ensayo del vuelo (Flight Rehearsal), which was awarded with the Julia de Burgos National Poetry Award in 2008 in Puerto Rico. He has a short story collection, Septiembre (September), awarded by the Pen Club Puerto Rico in 2000, institution that also recognized La Torre’s first two novels, Historia de un dios pequeño (Tale of a Small God, 2001) and Gracia (Grace, 2004), as the one the best books published in their respective years. His latest novel, Correr tras el viento (Chasing the wind), was successfully released as an e-book late in 2010, ranking number 4 among Amazon Kindle’s best selling list for thrillers/ mystery in Spanish. He currently teaches Creative Writing at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus.

Last updated April 29, 2015