Poetry by Rafael Mendes

Cherry tomatoes

Molar’s pressure pushing

pericarp, mesocarp, seeds

until the point of eruption in the oral mucosa,

releasing mellow grades of flavour.

To eat cherry-tomatoes

in a soundproof room.

Fill the mouth with the Aztec fruit,

working the teeth with patience

until the explosion that initiated the universe.

I remember

That winter in the Walden forest.

When the country had a new idol and we celebrated on Sundays.

The eccentric smell of the passion fruit harvest.

My delusion after La Tomatina.

The number of my Trans-Siberian Railway ticket.

The soot on the child’s body bathing in the Ganges.

A black woman in the presidency.

When all birds were released.

The constitution of the National Republic of Palestine being celebrated.

The last H bomb being dismantled at the Gate of Heavenly Peace.

Atlantis being preserved with the last map being destroyed.

Seven billion trees being planted.

Potosí’s ghosts coming back from work.

No title

The man holds the needle, his foot rests

over the pedal, straightens his spinal cord.

The layout begins. He replicates the bend

made by the bluebird that left the sun and

got lost at sea. He moves in the chair,

cleans the glass lenses, draws the barely

noticeable spirals of coffee and cigarette

smoke at the dawn of day.

Darns the day stitching destiny. Outside

rotten oranges burst in the branches. 

About the contributor

Rafael Mendes is a poet and translator. His poems have appeared on Poetry Programme, The Irish Times, FLARE and on “Writing Home: The New Irish Poets” (Dedalus Press, 2019). He also has poems published in Brazil and Portugal. He’s a member of NIC writers group at The Irish Writers Centre.

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