Claudia Patricia Gomez Gonzalez is Returned to Mother Earth, a Poem by Chella Courington

Updated: Feb 6


Photo by Markus Spiske

At the border, children cry in cages.


Drenched in dark dreams, I wake.

My mother reaches from the grave. Nails catch the hem of my dress.

I fall on granite. Red streaks my shins.


Wrapped in a gray Mayan shawl, her mother is silent.


My father sits sobbing. Dust spots his black suit. Dried red roses

lay across his legs. Thorns pierce the wool.


Her father weeps.


#ClaudiaPatriciaGomezGonzalez. #Sayhername.

Just turned twenty. Taking flight from violence in Guatemala. Shot

in the head by a Texas border agent. May 23, 2018.


Mother and father receive the white coffin carrying their daughter.


Its cover lifted partway.





 

Chella Courington is a writer and teacher whose poetry and fiction appear in anthologies and journals including SmokeLong Quarterly and New World Writing. Her lyrical, flash novella, Adele and Tom: The Portrait of a Marriage (Breaking Rules Publishing), is featured at Vancouver Flash Fiction. A 2020 Pushcart and Best Small Fictions Nominee, Courington (she/her) lives in California.