Monday, April 19, 2010

structural damage

Structural Damage

Sunday and I sit at my parents’ window
watching the mormons walk home from church
As the ward empties itself onto our sun-sick street
I think I see our ceiling flaking onto the carpet
Bits of sheetrock snow peel apart and drift through the air,
my own winter holiday, always, what would the mormons think
The paint unstrips from the beams,
still behind are boughs of dry wood,
white wall battering the floor
What if this house pulls apart like a loose thread
what now as the wood beams break

-Rio Cortez

Rio Cortez is a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, where she was the recipient of the Lucy Grealy Prize in Poetry. She has plans to attend the MFA program at New York University in the fall. Her work has been published in Dark Phrases, Through the Looking Glass & Catharsis Literary Magazine. Rio hates plane crashes and cuts in subway service, she loves and lives in Queens, NY.


  1. Good stuff. Aside from being beautiful, this woman is an incredible writer and this piece is just one of many in a collection of great works. Keep it up, Rio. You're brilliant. And J, the blog is awesome. So props to you as well.

  2. My favorite part is the emotion and life being brought to the building and other inanimate objects. Also enjoyed the part about a personal winter holiday. Nice job!