Sweaty fingertips color my skin
mixture cafunés in my hair,
drag affection through my fiber threads.
My stare reflects in my mother’s gaze,
eye-to-eye I see myself in her. I look at the
years gaping mountains carving through her face.
Glimpsing the mangled spinal cord of ancestry,
I crawl in my mother’s back. Reviving the
sugared tangerine taste of childhood
I hug tightly the body that gave me life,
eggshell white lines through her living home.
Our hands clasp with the bond beyond this realm
I baptize my flesh with her scent, touch the
silent trace of my identity in yellowed smile,
vibrant red lips, and flowered dress.
Folded for too long, the crumples are still
visible in the delicate paths around her eyes.
With the surface of my nails, I unearth lost stories,
an immortal past I kiss with dry lips.
The hummingbird in her chest refuses to die,
even after her face became hardened with tropical sun,
my mother still possesses a furious racing heart
that speaks with mason jar honey voice,
holds me up to the sticky sun
letting me taste the dawning of the universe
and the bittersweet coated air.
By Luiza Louback
Luiza Louback is a Latin-American, Brazilian emerging writer, and high schooler. Her work has appeared in national anthologies and has been recognized by the NY Times Summer Academy. When she is not writing, she teaches English to low-income students and advocates for literary accessibility in Latin America.