Three Welcomes (Sorta)

Barcelona Old Man

Many thanks to *82 Review for publishing the following poem in their Fall 16  4.3 issue.

Tres Bienvenidos

                           —Barcelona triptych, 1980

1)  Pensione Viejo


Corner room with noon-blue walls

   peeling plaster, thin twin bed

      old wood dresser, stuck dresser drawer


Across the courtyard, canary in his cage

    old man, too, staring from his window sill

       old brown jacket, old brown cap


When I bid him Buenos dias

    he tip-taps out his cigarette

      pulls the shutters shut


2)  Muchachas no Tocas


 Up the Rambla, down the Rambla

   city locals selling country crafts

      wooden tables, rickety stalls


Spanish girls strut by, thick dark ropes of hair

   eyes tagged only on merchandise

      flowers and seashells, candy and clothes


I ask the price of a white gauze scarf

   girl behind the table yanks it from my hand

      spats at me in CatalanNo, no toquis!


3)  Lluevos no Quieros


.Sidewalk table, white-coat waiter

   unfolds a fancy café menu

      basket full of sticky rolls


I order café con leche, plate of scrambled eggs

   sit back and watch the promenade

      parade of tourists, vagabonds like me


.The waiter brings my breakfast

   scrambled eggs over easy

      cup of coffee a cup of tea



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