Zocalo, Poem

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At the entrance to the cathedral,
perched inside the narrow gate,
he had no legs.
I could not pretend
I didn’t see the metal wheels
or hear his words whispered
into Sunday morning.
I passed close enough to touch,
hands empty, no change.
His eyes followed me.
Shame covered my head and still,
another man offered me white lace
streaming from his arthritic hands.
A boy placed an orange into the metal jaw,
pulled the lever. Juice dripped into a paper cup.
Tending a smoky brazier, a woman
brushed aside a strand of hennaed hair
threw her head back, erupted in laughter.
Above uneven stones of the sinking plaza,
life fluttered in the hem of spotless white satin
as the young girl twirled before her father.