Two Poems

Poetry / Lino Anunciacion

The Way We Move through Water

a drop of water
moves slowly
down the
shower wall

a black body
braces for impact
and then steps
into the rain

the way we move through water like
the captain
navigating grief:
unsure of how many bodies lie beneath us.

a glass of water
melts on the
kitchen table

a nervous hand
taps against
the wood

a mother’s eyes
never leave the door frame

the way water swims down black
bodies unsure of the
way to our roots

the way our mothers can smell a storm
from fifty miles       away

the way it rains both
bullets and       bodies
in america

our mothers
are the only
evacuation plan

their arms,
the only safety net
we’ve ever known

but what net
do you know
to be bulletproof

what arms can
withstand the on-
coming storm

our bodies
still smell like rain
and it is phenomenal

how the whole
house floods
when we don’t
come home

how the faucets
pour endlessly
between our mothers'

how there is always
a broken pipe
of wind or of water

how some day
is the last day
we say our mothers’ name
how some day always comes
unpredictable as it may be.

the first shower
you take
after seeing
a dead body
will smell like sea salt and copper.

the third dead body
they wake up to
won’t wash
off for two days.

the way we move through water,
always unsure of when the sinking begins,
never quite ready for the abyss
when it comes.


shed your skin. brace for impact. carry the whole sea on your shoulders. laugh at the pain. laugh at the pain. participate. participate. give yourself a reason to stay, like a garden, and nurture those flowers until the end of time. sleep in the meadow of the flowers you led yourself to love because you believe in something more than just the decay in your body, that if you could grow a home from the dirt and the dust, then surely you deserved to live there.

Lino Anunciacion is a Texas-transplant spoken word artist based in Bryan, Texas. He serves as President of Mic Check Poetry, a 501(c)3 non-profit poetry organization, and Director of Texas Grand Slam Poetry Festival, the largest individual poetry festival in Texas. He is the author of And Then You Begin To Sing, as well as four other books. He works as the Senior Media Manager for Write Bloody Publishing and studies full time at Texas A&M University, while teaching weekly poetry workshops in the B/CS community.