Monique Quintana – Turpentine is the color of serpent

Monique Quintana

Turpentine is the color of serpent

            For Sallie Saiz

is the color of codices. A girl is born inside a codex. There are pages of a snake pit to tell her the difference between this reptile from the next. There are reptiles with honor and dishonor. She reads that dreams about reptiles mean fear. She dreams of turtles. They are in aquariums all over her house, and she keeps forgetting to feed them. They remind her how she forgot herself. She left her house and honed earth until she hit stone, and it gave her blessings again. The stone grows a wall of sunflowers on American avenue. If only she could turn them to stone, she said, so they could not lose their color.

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