Virgil Suárez

Song to the Eucharist

Pinched there between the priest’s fingers

it is a moon, full and round on the surface

of this lake, way back in the water’s memory

of my home in Havana. Break it and you

are free, crumbs will lead you home. A fist,

the kind that pounded my father’s skull in

as he refused to snitch on his friends at work,

the men who plotted the overthrow of Fidel.

There were no churches in my childhood,

only the charred piece of earth where they once

stood, cinders burnt to rubble, black

bricks like the broken smile of a boxer.

When the priest raises the Eucharist heavenward,

a clock of white birds take flight from a cane field,

where we find our lives once again, right there

where we hear Trio Matamoros’ “Son de la loma.”