2 poems

by Paul Sanchez

2 poems

Otra Marias and Ice Workers


Otra Maria works the laundromat​​ 

While her boyfriend the Iceworker

Picks up and puts down​​ 

Irrigation pipe two at a time.

They both can remember​​ 

Their teacher taking them

To see a sick poet read

From his final notebooks

Detailing the problems​​ 

And insights of someone​​ 

Drunk with the sick blood​​ 

And wine of the same​​ 

central valley. The more he thinks

The less sure he is. The more

She thinks the more she is assured.

They search through the water​​ 

of blue tongues for a reflection,

Only this ice worker is left here

To remember that night, every

Night. ​​ This ice worker is left alone

Waiting for an otra Maria

Who doesn't work at the laundromat.

Someone whose boyfriend won't come

To take cash from her register

Or have to leave her window

Open for her friends to crawl​​ 

Through after throwing

A beating on some pobrecito

Who probably didn't then

Again maybe did deserve it.

Nine planets of marias, oceanic and

Musical depths, you were too young

And ignorant to ignore. An otra Maria

Is always there and to them​​ 

You must always say yes.

An otra Maria for those of us

Whose fastest horse ran

The wrong way, those who

Will stake the underdog

And still feel horse kicked

Right in the chest when they

Lose. Both hinds thrusting

Rear without any friction

In the voice from the deep

Purple apple of her throat.



The Programmer Writes an Algorithm for the After Life



If the only explanation for extinction

Sudden or slow extinguishing

Of each distinct person and species

Is the same as when I swat a fly

Or step on a spider,


death comes​​ 

From nowhere the original

Deus ex Machina


Then something must be invented

Words must written

As a stay against that swarming


Zero summer in the traphouse

The rarest of all that can said and heard

The unbelievable seen and then there’s you

Your gift has always been to make me notice

And care even when I didn't want to care

Because I know to care is more than love

And to care leaves me shieldless

Helmetless, head bowed while you open

Your treasured storage of weapons

Index finger to your lips

as you make your choice.

About the Author

Paul Sanchez is a Fresno State MFA student trying to get some poems published. His poems can be found in the San Joaquin Review, the Undercurrent, the CWAA journal 'Flies, Cockroaches, and Poets,' the Scene and Heard Journal and the PACIFIC Review. He is also, poetry reader for The Normal School and officer for Chicanx Writers and Artists.

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#thesideshow| Micro-poetry| November 2019