Joseph Rios – Somebody’s Little Brother’s Birthday

Joseph Rios

Somebody’s Little Brother’s Birthday

For Sara Borjas

There’s a Chicanx child of Rocio Durcal
crooning under the light of a PD helicopter 
and they’ve got the whole hood singing and weeping 
to the song. Meanwhile, my tio is already drunk 
and telling my cousins how much he loves them and 
they’re all hugging and crying like it’s the first 
and last time anyone had a birthday and pitches in
on a bounce house that is also a water slide 
and my cousin’s ex boyfriend from down the street
who still gets invited to family kickbacks is texting 
her how much this song reminds him of her and maybe
they could give it another shot cuz it kinda seems like 
they were meant to be together and he don’t know 
she’s been steady seeing her best friend who is 
the homegirl tearing it up right now, hella singing,
the kinda singing that has my widowed tia 
hollering like she’s tryna come out of retirement
to snatch up a young buck and claim ’em on her taxes.
And there’s Grandpa is in his wheelchair on the back lawn 
with a blanket over his lap carrying a dirty paper plate 
with a plastic fork and a crushed napkin talkenbout, 
he’s so happy when all his family gets together. 

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