Suzi F. Garcia is the daughter of a Peruvian immigrant, and a Poetry Editor at Noemi Press. She has an MFA in Creative Writing with minors in Gender Studies and Screen Cultures, and her work has been featured in or is forthcoming from Apogee, Vinyl, the Offing, and more.

A Counter to the Narco Cities

We are finding comfort

in domesticana, connecting to violence

in ways both metaphysical and undeniable.

We are closing ourselves

into a soccer field, into a capital city

that is small but full, lining

our cardboard coffins in paper

flowers. We are mazing

our way out of this life, burrowing

ourselves with those we lost, those we lose, those

we can’t hold onto, because if life is fleeting,

you wouldn’t believe how long death has become.

We Haunt Walls in the Homes of our Murderers

for the missing 43

Another glass of wine won’t wash us out.
A media can’t see us because
we blend in, a wall of brown in black, but
our disappearance made us monstrous.

Count us by our legs, we are
endless. You cut us apart,
we grow new heads. Our names
are written deep in words unsaid, but
they sit on tips of teeth,
build a taste, sour like bad candy. We lift out
of mudslides, and official nothing can’t hold
us. We steal the breath

of our murderers in wind whispers and hold
court on bus routes. Corruption
touches all that we see, so we soak
uniforms in our blood. Crowned
in cactus spikes, we indict them all.
They look in the bottom of their glasses,
we settle as dust that chokes, that grits
in their mouths.

Where Life is Hard, but Funerals Are Free

after Counter-Archives to the Narco-City

And there are corners in which words are written
in dust, in bright pink sharpie, in languages forgotten.
We are building cities in our homes. I am not trying
to recreate what was, just destroy what is. I have pulled
all my hair out, made a nest. It is fine but full, and if we weave
tight enough, we swing far above it all, hold on, but I’m not
worried, we are ashes— scatter, hold.

Note: These poems are ekphrastic responses to the Counter-Archives to the Narco-City.