Touched by an Anglo, by Frank Mundo
In my dreams I still smoke / cigarettes. / And I’m always still about 16 years old.
I used Google Maps to locate your house,
the streets where you lived, and the empty lot
near the Dairy Queen where your corpse was found
— disgraced, decomposing, head hung in shame —
by a pair of precocious little kids
who could have been brothers like me and you.
— excerpt, “Waste of Shame: a sestina”
Frank Mundo, author of the widely published essay, “How I Became a Mexican,” wields a knife you’ve seen, straight out of the kitchen drawer but somehow sharper than you remember, to carve the everyday tragedy and comedy of life right down to the bone. Mundo spares neither our sense of horror nor our funny bone, with poems that speak from the page like your childhood best friend peering over your shoulder.
Turn Left at Cucamonga
Dear Count Dracula,
You can see Cucamonga Peak
From the Home Depot on Foothill Blvd.
Kukamonga means sandy place
or place with many springs.
At least, that’s what they told the Rains,
the white family who bought
Rancho Cucamonga in 1858.
But these days the only real springs
that still exist in the Cucamonga Wilderness
are legends on the maps of Aztlan
and in the parking lot at Home Depot.
Just ask Bugs Bunny.