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  • the sky is falling

    burning and tumbling,
    tangling the shrouds of schooners
    and streaming ragged suns

    whistling up from the deep
    they sang phosphorescence on our retinas
    hollowed green booms
    glancing off bowed horizons
    to kiss the spangled rooftops

    the sky is falling and
    the stars skitter beneath a thousand dancing feet
    their hearts are made of
    paper, tinsel, glass, metal
    what are they singing?

    before the fall
    the fishermen moored their ships
    and cast their gilded nets over hills
    to pull the darkness down

    first there was hungry blue stillness
    and the harbor was a pail of milk
    while Valparaiso held her breath
    for the sky to open
    te volviste
    twelve strokes and the steel-roofed houses
    are strung up on telephone wires
    marionettes dangling from wrists of smoke
    shouts scurry up their walls
    and the streets inflate as
    the lonely accordeon gasps for air

    the statues have stepped down from their pedestals
    they lope about the plaza
    through crawling men and walking dogs
    and from his post in an alley near Anibal Pinto
    Salvador Allende
    waggles an approving toe on the stair
    te volviste
    love, army, revoluciĆ³n, mob
    there is a chorus
    ten thousand strong
    stacatto fists
    balled or clasped or slung over shoulders
    pounding the day into being

    the morning moon curtsies before the dawn
    he is a shard of bone
    red women in lais hoist him up on flagpoles
    the cords are cut
    the streets fall flat
    the statues congelan
    and houses shiver into file

    but on a stair by el cementerio
    a few stars remain
    apricot embers
    winking under blood-stained toes.
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