National Poetry Month Day 26: “but she wasn’t from my south” by Randall Horton

By

But She Wasn’t From My South

i’ve been trying to recall nostalgia, how
      hidden within deep memory they call it
saudade, its origin portugal, no i’ve never been
      lost to a lover, sadly misled, discarded,
all the ache inside me caged—yes i lie
      ‘tween the faded golden of yr paradoxical
sweet melancholy, eradicated, sadden
      & something vibrates this pulse, maybe
villancicos & cantigas are part of what
      i never knew lagrimas de saudade or fado
in general, the guitar i coveted twanged
      all night long, totally puzzled i am—are you
for real, about the past, i run futuristically
      to that shudder left in me, forever it is gone,
yr ghost of fatalistic moans circle my dome
      spinning, again & again i can’t lie but i am
shipwrecked, my portuguese love i drown deep
      into the mythology of you, i remain still.

-Randall Horton

ROPA banner ad

Randall Horton is the recipient of the Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award, the Bea Gonzalez Poetry Award and most recently a National Endowment of the Arts Fellowship in Literature. Randall is a Cave Canem Fellow, a member of the Affrilachian Poets and a member of The Symphony: The House that Etheridge Built. Randall is Assistant Professor of English at the University of New Haven. An excerpt from his memoir titled Roxbury is published by Kattywompus Press. Triquarterly/Northwestern University Press is the publisher of his latest poetry collection Pitch Dark Anarchy..


From time to time, The Rumpus publishes new poems. Check out this multimedia collection of poetry we've published. More from this author →