I Speak of the City: Victor Hernández Cruz

By Lingual Wholes: Back Cover
Originally uploaded by geminipoet

[Last night’s SPT MLA Off-Site Reading was a great chance to hear some local work, read a duet poem with Barb and drop one of my more favorite recent poems (A Bodega on Anywhere Avenue) but the biggest thrill was meeting Stephen Vincent. I’ve been a huge fan of Vincent’s visionary work as publisher and editor of Momo’s Press which published much of Jessica Hagedorn, Ishamael Reed and Victor Hernández Cruz’s early work.

Finding a used copy of Cruz’s By Lingual Wholes (for $1!) was not only a great addition to the Sexy Loft Library but also helped me in my quest for publication. Yes, online journal and e-books are a new part of the literary landscape that are here to stay but the physical object that is the book will remain timeless and can;t be easily replaced by a screen image or PDF as evidenced by Momo’s Press layout of the graphic poems in By Lingual Wholes.]

The Four Corners

The first corner has become a
bodega whose window is full of
platanos who have traveled
miles to rest in that reality
green with splashes of black
running down their spines
The other corner had a restaurant
a crab running out of the door
speaking: You can’t write about
my belly unless you taste it
The other third corner found
a group of friends singing
They became clocks with their
a zoon zoon zoon
zoon su Babare

The last and final corner
is where I stand
like a fool making this up

© Victor Hernández Cruz

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