RAIN IN BELO HORIZONTE

CLARA PAIVA

 

There was rain in Belo Horizonte when I landed,
& everyone made sure to let me know it was a big deal—
god, what a day you have chosen to visit us
& it’s not usually like this, I promise—
as if willing to bleed in the name of the city,
to risk the honour, the rage of the water herself
just so no outsider would get the wrong idea.
As we pass the Pampulha, the drops drafting
their own horror movie on the lake’s surface,
the taxi driver tells me this is the place an alligator
killed a girl just like me on a wet morning just like this;
for a minute, I don’t want to go home anymore.
I swallow my spit when I watch the water french kiss
the black & white stones with such intention
that I somehow know there was, too, rain
fucking these same sidewalks the day I was born.
When I die, there will be rain on every soil
that was once touched by the concrete, there will be
rain feasting on everything that was once organic,
like a second deluge so seductive in its ferocity
people will run raw & bare to the nearest avenue.
When I die, bury me deep enough for my body to
become one with Belo Horizonte’s water tables
so I can spend eternity playing pretend.

 

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