by Karl Michael Iglesias

I remember when one popped up on Easter weekend
family reunion. Where the primos stay home
as new parents, the titi’s go to service
as daughters under their mother’s roof

their father’s roof. All the abuelos and
abuelitas have gone home on a long road trip
to a church convention in heaven. No one is sure
where all the tio’s go. Maybe it births at a warm

near your sternum and when you look down
you’ve discovered you’ve been baptised
with your niece’s cheerio spit-up. There is a rag
for that and I don’t change my sweater. It opens with me

being the uncle. With the yuca soaking
in warm water before being brought
to blade. Begins with patience. And on the southside,
it always pops off because in every long family, there’s a couple short

tempers and I’ve been an uncle
since I was five. I know
where the hole in the hallway
comes from.

Originally from Milwaukee, WI, and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Karl Michael Iglesias’ work can be read on Apogee, The Acentos Review, The Breakwater Review, The Florida Review, RHINO Poetry, Kweli Journal, The Breakbeat Poets Vol 4. LatiNext, The Westchester Review, Wisconsin Life, Third Coast, and The Brooklyn Review. His debut chapbook, CATCH A GLOW, is available now on Finishing Line Press. Karl now resides in Brooklyn, NY.

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