Eduardo Rivera




She’d always been there

occupying the same room.

It was only when I looked

at the edges of things

my eyes, going wide watering,

objects burning,

Where before there’d only been empty space

I sensed layers and layers,

felt the air in the room thicken.

Behind my eyelids a white flash

a think noise.

That’s when I could see her.


Once I accidentally ran my arm

through her body

felt heat on one side of my face.

She wasn’t solid.

The shock pushed me against the wall.

A torrent of days swept past me

before I tried to “see” her again.

She had never wanted to be flesh she told me

until she met me.

At first it was hard to say

on the border between the physical world

and hers.

It was only there at the interface

that we could see each other.

See? We wanted to touch.

I wished I could become

pulsing color, pure sound, bodiless as she.

It was impossible, she said

for humans to become noumenal.


Gloria Anzaldúa, 1987

Image: Eduardo L Rivera, 2018, from the series Over Dry Lands