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Fall/Winter 06/07 Edition
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Author: Lorraine Caputo
Location: South America

Lorraine Caputo is a documentary poet, activist and translator. Her works have been published in the U.S., Canada and several Latin American countries in more than 50 reviews, seven collections of poetry, an anthology of women's travel literature, and three recordings. She has done more than 200 readings from Alaska to Argentina. For the past three and a half years Ms. Caputo has been travelling and living in Latin America. Through her writings she hopes to be able to put a human face on the names of countries, to build bridges of understanding between us.

--para la doña Carmen

Cheeks hollow, sockets hollow
	clavicles and scapulae
Eyes yellow, skin yellow
	palms of hands &
		soles of feet
Beaded necklaces, wide beaded
	armlets drape into the
		folds of your being
Sometimes you shiver
	with your fever, sometimes
		your breath rattles

Today blood seeps, sometimes
	erupts from your
		grimaced mouth
The aroma of your
	bowels escaped wafts
		through this agéd refuge

Barí woman, your time
	is near, to pass to the
		other world

But you are a day’s
	journey from your
		village, your family
Your belongings can’t
	be gathered
		around you
The songs can’t 
	be sung, the
		herbs laid

You will die in the silence
	of this white man’s world
		with assurances that
His god loves you
	&--if you confess—
		forgives you

You will die far from your people
	far from your home, the
		songs & the herbs

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