“The blood of my ancestors / called me with a pistol / at the hand of my father / whispering goodbye.”

Architect: Kidneys with Lupus

I drive a big yellow taxi.
A fast car.
An evil beauty of piss color
and sunflower bloom.

I confess I am a waiting room.
A halfway house.
A floating blood bank off the East Andes. 
I am radioactive.
I am the “be still.” 
The science,
the flicker jubilee 
and haze 
of Chernobyl.

I am the lighthouse
the elastic shelter.
The little light fetish
of sparrow constellations.

The History of My Father’s Pain

“we all knew.”

the clock man of the island 
was an SS officer

the cries of Himmler gripped in the hand 
of God

turning counter clockwise

blood careening in gravity

body suspended upside down


safe in Bayamon
the clock man,
the minute hand,
repairing my grandmother’s clock

flamboyan trees,
blooms of blood suns,
touching the tight lipped
shutters of the window 


sounding the grandfather 


tolling the moon above the cabin 
of grandmother’s clock

the lingua of the pendula 
of God. 
“Todos sabimos.”

“The sound was old and beautiful”

I sometimes wonder if we pay for our secrets, 
my grandmother’s father hidden in a wall
during a reaping, his brother walked to a cliff
by nationalists

I spit tomato vines thru a parting 
in the kitchen shutters,
my grandmother, my mamá, 
tasting the escabeche with a wooden spoon
lips rouged 

the clock tolls once for every hour
the shoreline breaks with a body
along Castillo del Morro 

the clock tolls eleven times 
and each time she meditates 
on the dismemberment by the 
minute man to find the silenced

“El sonido era antiguo y bella.”


       “No, he was a very nice
        and secluded man with
        his windows closed 
        with little light coming in.”

My father and grandfather knocked on the cabin door,
scalloped feet and head shouldered,
the tongue of gold silenced
my mamá had told them

tHe mInuTe MAN answered and led them thru, 

father wandered from grandfather
a door open 

a watch
man on the wall
eagle perched on swastika,
tolling below
rim of a shoddy
braids for slaughters earned 
mounted on the shoulder.
lightning on hat
on sleeve
on hilt. 
The photos. 
The awards.
The cries. 

“I will kiss you with my hands open.”

El Moro rising from the chest of my grandmother
port of entry
swollen with merchant 
chemicals whistling
gates open

constellation of sores
waxing crescent
Spanish tongue
de la mamá
Capella at the tolling
licking the moon

no me besas.

mis labios


you are beautiful
this is Hydra
I will wash
with my lips
my mother constellation

“Te beso con mis manos abiertos.”


The grandfather clock
blood let of minutes, 
licked its last night when mamá died, 
gasping for air, 
father at the foot, 
grandfather at the head,
the last toll

she sang my name at the hour.


The father clock, 

the clock,

the blood of my ancestors, 

called me with a pistol, 

at the hand of my father, 

whispering “goodbye,”

whispering revive, 

revive the clock,

the toll, 

the secret of the blood let minute.


Bianca Viñas is a graduate of the Vermont College of Fine Arts Writing and Publishing Program. Her debut anthology, Life Lines: Rewriting Lives from Inside Out, a collection of short stories and essays by incarcerated women, is set for release with Green Writers Press in Summer 2019. Bianca is currently completing her first novel, a hybrid work of poetry, medical research and narrative prose. She edits novels and is on staff at Hunger Mountain Magazine. Bianca lives in a studio in Montpelier, Vermont near her writing family.

Featured image: KELLEPICS (Pixabay)