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They climb in a flesh canoe
for the maquiladoras to stab their
pipes into and carry them down river,
where the locals suck their soap refuse
and haze like hash,
burning out-of-season mangoes,
hard-skinned and bitter.  They hack thin spit
that runs along street curbs into drains
beside the roundworm water
and then disappears in the dry Rio Grande
where even bones evaporate-
caught, sand-handed, by border police.
They climb in a flesh canoe
with babies swaddled on their
cigarette-pack shoulder pads,
and dip their oars silently in the sand.
Their legs ripple with the
effort of remaining water.
Goodnight, they tell Juarez,
and don't look on in anger.
Drinkin' McCafe. Nothin' wrong with that.
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November 21, 2009
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