Rane Arroyo


Caliban's Collected Poems
is celebrated for a season,
petting zoo for the wealthy.

Praise gets stuck in his gut.
Is he the slave who won't leave
the red plantation that he has

set on fire? Soon, awards
feel like New Jersey cement
boots: he sinks towards

the bottom of a sea that is
bottomless. Caliban tries
to unlearn his poems, to write

of his own betrayals. He is
another eaten devil, another
dead hurricane to shelve.

A Heartbreaker by Accident

Call me Cal,
short for California,
my birth name-
and death name?

I've bagged a surfer or two,
thanks to my Americanized
abs. Who isn't
Death's understudy?

If I ever pray again
it'll be to St. Joseph, Jesus'
stepfather. He knew
what it was like

to be unimportant.
When under a man,
I don't need any
goddamn constellations.

Loteria (someone has to win it)

Tío would buy a Corvette
worthy of being stolen.
Tía would buy a farm
in the old country

big enough to bury us
and future relatives.
Mami wants houses for
her children, the opposite

of the Big House. Papi
would buy himself a new
family in the bars. Oh,
he does that already.

Rane Arroyo is the author of four books of poems, the latest being Home Movies Of Narcissus (University of Arizona Press). He has published extensively and can be read in The Massachusetts Review, Pool, The Caribbean review, The Hawaii Review and many other places. His most recent adventure was being the guest poetry editor for Heliotrope. His email is RRArroyo@aol.com or rane.arroyo@utoledo.edu. His latest project is a long poem about space aliens and illegal aliens in American imagination.


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