Convento Santo Domingo

Sara Daniele Rivera

           Hay un lugar lejos de toda ciudad.

          — Blanca Varela

Windows ring the bell tower.

Mourning, mouthing.

In a recreated room I write

letters to my dead so Martín,

doctor who walked

through walls, might cross

solidities and find them.

The bell tower. Yellow archways

on oxidized black. I don’t want

to climb the tower stairs. Some

certainty tells me I can’t survive it, stairs

that present as exposed ribcage —

Lima from above. Rooftops

compile their own color, hide

their grey and their broken

light. A sun-round with its edges

lost. Pink and yellow facades, balconies

built and rebuilt y ya llegamos a

la carretera donde uno se da

cuenta: I am apart from this city. Every

city. I am not who I am and maybe

this is vertigo, terror, I don’t know

the history of that building, terror,

I can’t map space, terror, teal,

yellow, brown a step away from

black. There is a place far

from all city. Not any city,

all. This is the translation.


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