apartment 5e

February 10, 2012

on the day of your death
pack lightly

because the only thing
that goes with you
are memories and Love.

123 e. 112st
apartment 5e
Titi Isabel’s tight three bedroom apartment
fit Love, laughter, sixty-two people
and still had space leftover for healing.

i remember the sound of our young voices.
i can still smell Titi’s sazon in the air.
i remember exactly the corner
where abuela always sat.

we cheered
when the families would come in
one-by-one we paraded
(macy’s had nothing on us).

her apartment decorated for christmas
at the beginning of october
(she still does it).

we were Home.

in Yanqui’s room
we’d sit and talk
teenage stories
that at the time
seemed so intense
and real -and secretive.

in the hallway
we played baseball
for 12 innings.

we’d have “showtime.”
dress up and go into the living room
to make aunts and uncles laugh
(abuela would smile the entire time)
as we imitated each of them at church
or doing something particular to each of them.
no one was saved from our wisecracks
-not even our parents.

we filled our bellies with food
digested it with laughter
and went home Loved and Loving.

if we could just hold a single moment…
if only we could just be still in that space for one more breath.

Writer’s Note: Titi ‘Sabel, gracias por ser y estar. Gracias por sacarme los piojos, por librarme de par’ de pelas de Mami, por cuidarnos, por estar presente… te quiero mucho y me quedo corta.

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One Response to “apartment 5e”

  1. Brenda Galvin Says:

    Beautiful!

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