El Junque

Small island we called home
Puerto Rico, me encanta
Friends apologized for
the recent visit of Hugo
“El barstardo” tore down buildings,
but the saddest casualty was nature

El Junque, the rainforest
hidden inland, had paid dearly

Now there was but a bit of heaven:
Lush ferns, lantana underfoot
Palms, missing top feathers
but swayin what Mama Earth gave ’em
“Lo siento, Amelita,” said Fran
(I’m so sorry, Amy)

“El Junque is but a, how do you say,
una sombra de los dias pasados”
(A shadow of days gone by)

Yet, as I watched a paradise-painted parrot
linger on bird of paradise, gilding the lily,
I witnessed nature’s sense of humor

And as the juice of a fresh-picked mango
rolled down my chin, all I thought was,
¡Puerto Rico, mi alma! My soul!

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
(Amy de Barlow y Laughlin, la lápiz pequeño y perspicaz)

Hannah at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads wanted poems about the rain forest.  How about having one in your back yard… or at least a few miles down the road from you house?  That was the luckiest part of living in Puerto Rico – apart from friends I made and abuelitas (grandmothers) who cooed over pictures of mi nena (my little girl), Riley.  Gorgeous island, beautiful people.  Peace, Amy