Day of the Dead

Death is as beautiful as the birth

of civilizations,

like a sky lit by

supernova flares

galaxies out of thin air


out of the star’s ashes


As beautiful

as a phoenix

first spreading its wings,

rain-drops from soot clouds

spawned over graceful gusts

from fiery feathers

soft like the soil tended

by their tears


Do we fly like phoenixes?

with eagle feathers in hair

on top of

light skulls of sugar with

brittle bones


Do we soar as high as our spirits stretch?

skies aren’t the limits

neither are the stars

when one goes out, another’s light

shines brighter than before

in their honor


Our feathers flutter like fall-en

leaves, breezes blow

& the chief knows, the wise owls

of our past outlast, their wisdom

whispered in the wind beneath our

bending knees, and dancing feet

swaying with ease

we please the clouds

our ancestors cry for us,

tears of joy that we

are alive, and they

aren’t forgotten


Branden E. Balenzuela, USA

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