under a lone surviving Elm and newly sown sweet
corn, Pancho rests, speaking broken Española
the southern Colorado field, his barrio.
Pancho calls my father Ye’s instead of Les.
like tortilla or llama. My dad doesn’t seem to mind,
even though he complains.
Pancho tosses a stray mutt spicy chicharrón
thrown from a brown paper bag, his belly shakes
when the dog howls for more. “Ye’s la mirada” my dad nods
his head pulls his Allis-Chalmers cap over his big blues,
wanting to nap, but grins.
Pancho’s cousin says he is illegal, he sends money
to his wife, Theresa in Old Mexico, and has one son
who farms in Fresno. Later, dad, says, “Pancho’s gone
back to Chihuahua,” “lazy bastard.” A bit of worry
deepens his eyes. My brother’s say,
“Pancho’s been deported,” “deportado.”
Since Pancho’s capture, we play outside in the evenings
My mother throws a potato at my dad, grazing his bald head.
“You’re smoking too much; the kids cannot breathe.”
My father tells her, “Pancho’s son Pedro
left Mexico because the water and air are dirty.”
My mom does not hear him; he plants a big one on her
and calls her, “hot-lips,” labios calientes. My mom comes up for air
says, he will die of cancer if he doesn’t stop smoking. 15 years later he does.
My father again, takes his siesta, tosses hot Vienna sausages to the stray
he now calls, “Cisco.” There are no homemade chicharron. Cisco, whines.
Together they stretch under the Elm with Pancho
lost – my father and the stray, both American mutts, close their eyes
under the resting afternoon las sombra.
June 29, 2018