October 1, 2009

Daniel Romo

Blood Brothers

When we were 10
We pricked our index fingers,
Squeezed them tight
Until they resembled a crimson
And rubbed them together.

He moved four years later
And I never saw him
Until the other day,
When I was bored at work
And succumbed to
Facebook again.

His shaved head,
Bad tattoos,
And double birds
Made it difficult to recognize
My friend.

I recalled that day
In Ms. Barrett's class
When we manipulated staples
And became family—
The two-story, built-in pool, white boy
And the two bedroom, Doughboy, Latino—
Brothers Forever…

The swastika he now wore
On his left wrist,
Told me
We lost touch,
Long ago.

—An earlier version appeared in Verdad


Daniel Romo lives in Southern California and teaches high school there. He has been published in various forums, and is currently seeking admittance into a rather swell low residency MFA program. He's addicted to SportsCenter and thinks gray sky the utmost inspiration.

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