My uncle the magician came
with a basket of oranges.
The smell of citrus leaked
out through the house,
heady, redolent, and sour-sweet like grief.
Inside the basket, a hole with the moon;
inside the moon, my face without color,
face-bones protruding like old
In our house by the lagoon, where we lived
for ten years, an orange tree grew at the back of the garden.
It was heavy year-round with fat promises of health.
We squeezed the fruit with our hands, squishing
the pulp, drinking juice swimming with
these remnants of flesh. I remember ice cubes and glass,
my father’s strong fingers. Still, the ground underfoot
crumbled with rot.
My uncle the magician holds a basket of oranges.
An orange for longevity. An orange for luck.
He undoes the skin, showing nothing but air—
Come here, he beckons,
Eat this, he says.