As Us

A Space for Writers of the World

Andrea Serrano — Poetry

Wailing Woman, Coyote Howl

I drag my feet along sandy banks of acequias.
Goatheads gather on the hem of my skirt.
Dirt cakes between my toes,
and creates clouds of dust around me.

Warning people of my presence from miles away
My nighttime songs are confused
with the cries of coyotes.
I become alive under dark skies,
and I sing to ‘mana Coyolxauhqui
to welcome her as she comes in pieces
throughout the seasons of the moon:

new
quarter
half
full.

I sing to bring her back,
to bring my baby back.
No one believes me,
but I didn’t drown him in the river.
He died in my womb
before he had a face,
or lungs,
or tiny toes,
or a heart.

He dissolved,
drowned inside me.
Left my body
crimson – almost beautiful –
no form, just blood.

He was in my blood.

I still wail for him.
This bothers people and
they are afraid
when I look at their babies
and their tiny toes.

The longing in my heart
shows on my face.

Women are uncomfortable
when I look at their swollen bellies
with jealous anger.
I say nothing to ease their fears

My baby left during crescent moon;
a sliver torn into the night sky.
A fragment of ‘mana Coyolxauhqui
welcomed him.

I drag my feet along dirt and weeds.

I wait for him, and howl.


Andrea Serrano HeadshotAlbuquerque native Andrea J. Serrano has been writing and performing poetry since 1994 and is published in numerous  publications including Malpais Review; Mas Tequila Review; ¡Ban This! BSP Anthology of Xican@ Literature; as well as the forthcoming Lowriting: Stories, Shots and Rides from the Chicano Soul. Andrea has performed at numerous venues including the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in NYC, Galeria de la Raza in San Francisco and was part of  the Librotraficante Caravan Reading in Albuquerque. Andrea is the youngest of seven daughters and credits her family, her ties to land, language and culture and the experience of growing up Chicana in Albuquerque with influencing her writing. Andrea is a member of the band Cultura Fuerte, and is the creator and host of Speak, Poet: Voz, Palabra y Sonido, a monthly poetry venue.

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