Summer, Guadalajara Güero danced a drunk bolero on the roof. He gave me a peso crushed smooth by a train, a green clay figurine.
We swam in the fountain, circled by cars; drivers stopped to whistle: gringo. Güero shouted back, no, francés, water clinging to his corkscrew curls.
After that summer, he disappeared into Bloomington, Indiana. We exchanged letters, one each, and stopped.
Sometimes I think of Guadalajara’s roses, its cantinas and fountains, the squawk of macaws calling from the forest where the bus released us further than we thought. We found the wall where they jammed Hidalgo’s head on a stake, three small, stiff squirrels lining the curb.
We found the mummies of Guanajuato crowding a hill, babies in lace caps and trios of men, teeth exposed to sing rancheras to themselves.
If I could wake you out of your heartland, I would point my finger south, toward a vanishing point of sand, knowing full well:
When you placed that silver peso on the track, to smear the face of a man to alloy, entire histories disappeared.
The silver coin warms my palm, the moment clear.