Four Chicana Love Poems by Viva Flores



Where do you keep your gun never says he loves me but he loves the revolution my body brown and crossed.

Urgent hours unfolding maps and timing planes the roses in the blue glass vase sit coral and tilted.

Held up by the prayers of your mother and all of the women that  know your anxious face lit up in fleeting moments crowded airports  bus stops                                                                                                                          their shawls draped around shoulders  bent on tiptoes for a last  touch

of your militant mouth.


I waited then  as I  do now.


Awake a

warrior waits for the right conditions my silence a siren blaring  switching

we are living  on borrowed time and marrow.


He’s packing duffel bags with equipment and ammunition I’m

pacing don’t know what language would reach him.


Michoacán, cuando te vas

por las noches me duelen los huesos, despierto de espanto.

Navaja de muelles, solo tú me sacas lo malo, mi amor respaldado.


el que te caza, lo incendio, lo mato.


Michoacán, solo tú entiendes mi amor ominoso, my ominous love.  Iztaccihuatl, volcanic.

Fluorescent grey ash


swallow things up and turn them to stone, whole cities,

bridges and roads.


Michoacán, I erupt all alone when you pack up and go.


Fui. tu. nopal.


Te dije una vez que tomo poca agua,

que tomo poco agua

te dije una vez.


Me contestaste- mas de eso, me juraste

que amabas mi tierra asoleada

y te acostaste a mis pies.


Ahora me dices que amas las raíces mojadas

de una flor que llamas clavel.

Si las flores prefieres, nomás recuerda que son pronto a la muerte.

Año por año las veo nacer, crecer y con el frio, caer.


Pero esta guerrera de espinas, ni el fuego la mueve. Fuego quemando mi frente, nopalito fuerte.

Nunca podría ser flor nomás para tenerte.


Déjame sola con mi desierto y nunca regreses.


Tú y yo sabemos que ni raices tienes.


Border Lover


“La Frontera” he says aloud with tilted chin

cigarette dangling out of his upturned mouth.


I lay in dampened sheets as he searches the cityscape downtown, rasps a match and begins to smoke frantically. “This place is crazy” he says with uninhibited wonder, “I can’t wait to leave.”


There are dogs barking faintly somewhere down the street.


I think back to when you mentioned  your childhood and the westerns you’d watch on TV, there were saloons, right?  and

gunslingers who never gave up and women with long hair and bit parts that looked,  that looked

just like me?


I want to say this and so many things.


When you return to your University and write about  the desolate border, and

describe the harrowing conditions you were forced to live under, I doubt you’ll detail  how your desolate  hunger existed years before  that night  we exchanged  phone numbers.

How it burned anxiously in the mind of a little boy lonely who watched too many westerns on TV, grown into a man desperately grasping for lost identities

like hoping to find a pair of leatherette shoes that match from a discard pile.


You come to the border,  stay awhile,  only to

later regale friends and memoirs with your  rugged phase.


You forget my face,

melding me into just another  seamless memory  of the naked Mexican women  once strewn  on your bed.


Do your lovers in Chicago or New York fuck less hungrily  than I do, to you?


He writes about heads chopped in Juarez and sometimes the nobility of the Mexican milieu,

dropped head in reverence for the countless women buried, blind to how he buries burrows and uses this place  to hide secrets in its women, too.


Every city has its saloons.

All of this I want to say.


Downtown apartments lead to drunken rooms in Anywhere, USA,

and lonely little boys can move anyplace only to remain  afraid.




¿Qué dirían los grandes del amor como el nuestro?


Rostros en fuego, hasta dormidos.


Yo, gran creadora de mis propios  tejidos

locutora de máquinas imaginadas  propulsada por humo y manía-

Tú, bosque indómito, follaje lleno de vida, mi apartamento cuadrado se convierte selva cuando visitas troncos grandes y chicos

juntos tocamos nuevos sonidos.


Los troncos no se mueven fácilmente.


Caen; y por siempre desvían al camino

así tu cuerpo

acostado junto al mío.



Viva Flores

Viva Flores

Viva Flores is a Chicana poet and fiction writer. Her writing has most recently been featured in Lowriting: Shots, Rides & Stories from the Chicano Soul, Black Girl Dangerous, Tlaa: A Collective Indigenous Expression and the fall 2014 issue of The Official La Tolteca ‘Zine. Viva was also recently a featured speaker at Cal-State LA and UCLA in November 2014.
Viva Flores

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4 thoughts on “Four Chicana Love Poems by Viva Flores”

  1. “Downtown apartments lead to drunken rooms in Anywhere, USA,

    and lonely little boys can move anyplace only to remain afraid.”

    I just absolutely LOVE this poem, and those lines in particular!

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