Various Works

Victor David Sandiego — Works

Photo by Jelleke Vanooteghem on Unsplash
This section contains various works of mine that have appeared in other publications

Must Climb His Neck

by Victor D. Sandiego

My death rolled over in bed with a sorrowful face.

“Why do you not embrace my torso?” it asked
and for a moment
I became frozen between worlds.

The babbling street crawled in one ear through the window
and heaven descended from the bovada bricks
into the other. Street and heaven clashed behind my eyes
and severed my vision.

But I recovered and to my death replied:

“It is your neck I love, the rough dusty feel on my fingers
when I caress the crypt.” –

and my death merely stared at me,
as if I had ordered a coffee in a foreign tongue.

This piece first appeared in Labletter, November 2012

The Hollow Portion Of His Petition

by Victor D. Sandiego

Priest opens a desert fist a red fish, regards with one eye heavens as sun crackles tattoos on his face. “I beg you destroy my affection,” he says in blood and sand flows from his morning feet. The ceremony that devoured his son casts a rut to the far edge of the earth. The crease that canyons his life into two pieces swarms with abuse. But he cannot consume the knife, for habit of existence. He cannot swallow his own cruel stake.

This piece first appeared in Ditch Poetry, January 2014.

To Climb The Neck Of Muwadi

by Victor D. Sandiego

It is Grandfather’s idea: take the low road along the water
that encircles the mountain. This enrages me and I smash

his mouth with the back of my head. His teeth in his hands,
he sits on the edge of the bed to comfort me but I want

only to recall what happened last night: my mind is a blank
on how I arrived here in the company of sisters and men.

A blanket covers my modest groin but my wild eyes march back
and forth on a chain. I see the pinnacle through the trees

to the south of the cave at the same time my family abandons
me in their headlong push along the rivers.

Go. I must climb his neck. Like a sharp rock, he pierces the corneal sky
and compels it to downpour a tempest of tears.

Rodents burrow under roots, their crumbs and their thimble hearts dry.
When my candle sinks in a molten pool, I too cry for what I have missed:

the touch of a child hand, the death of a wife. But today, I put one foot
above the other on rock, test my weight against a mountain. From the top,

I see pointy scalps of the forest – and in a misting distance, the expanse
of my birth water that once lapped my feet as I gasped on the white

sea sand. Yes, I may slip and fall. If so, there will be an absolute
free moment of weightlessness when I will count my blessings, curses,

setbacks and triumphs in the pin-wheeling sky, earth and trees
before my breath is slapped from my lungs by the boulder I greet.

And I believe: I will bounce at least once or twice before blue
turns black, and black migrates back up to morning

as an inexpert emerald day in a brand new realm
opens.

This piece first appeared in Prime Number Magazine, June 2011.

Keepers

by Victor D. Sandiego

We

(brother and brother)

from the same slotted womb, fallen
apples into the world
must lever the door of the old, old home

(childhood playthings)

splintered back and enter
to smash with heavy panting sticks all
but for the lynching meat there.

I never trust a road that encircles a town:
it’s a death knot
and halts the evolution of blood
for the slow, slow resurrection of madness.

We cannot live
together, now that scales have turned
into shattered clocks, and the old, old house escapes

across the threshold. It’s a another era:
words run wild in the street
and only stumpy guttural sounds
take flight from the open vowels of their mouths.

So tempting to leave the hooks in the wall
display the portraits
of Grandfather and Grandmother
who wedded by the neck and gurgled a progeny

of uteral excuses into the dirt –
to breed, and flap newborn wings
higher and higher
until we

(brother and brother)

from the same miscast fishnet, gasp on a flopping shore
outside the old home

struggle to breathe outside the old home
now gone to splinters and chips

struggle to expand our repertoire of gills
into lungs.

This piece first appeared in Prime Number Magazine, June 2011.

Signposts

by Victor D. Sandiego

Listen

to the brown account of children Grandfather raised
from earthworms:

At first, no life

mark shivers among bits of them
that (sliced into slivers) unite into a blind shadow.

But peel

your gloom from a hillside, flip it on its black writhing back;
wipe the crusted dirt with sunlight.

This is bread

for thin thoughts. This is the unwashed goliath
that slaps a tombstone from your foot.

As membrane

we create life with grunts and thrusts; as skin
we embrace our symbiotic bones.

Read them
as bleached sticks in the loam:

Here points the fibula of Daniel to the lion; here the radius
and tarsals of Alexander

drip
the tubercular milk.

This piece first appeared in Ditch Poetry, January 2014.