“Sundowning” by Angela Narciso Torres (poetry, ’09)

An excerpt from “Sundowning” by Angela Narciso Torres (poetry, ’09) published at The Missouri Review:


                                                     for my mother, Carmen

The sweetest meat clings to the bone,
  my mother says, knifing her steak.
Carmen. Silver spade on my tongue.

  Mahjong nights, her mother and father gone,
she cried herself to sleep. Blamed in the morning
  for her mother’s losing hand. Unlucky tears!

The sweetest meat—she begins
  at dinner, tearing off a chicken leg.
What will she recall by morning?

  Named for Our Lady of Mount Carmel,
she pinned brown scapulars under our shirts,
  wet stamps that cleaved to our skin.

Carmen. Prayer on the breath.
  Amid potted ferns, she works
a jigsaw puzzle. Bizet on the radio. […continue reading here]