Un Verano en Nueba Yol

Un Café Bustelo Empty Can, A Fire hydrant on Blast Equated to Hope

Written By: Astrid Ferguson

It begins with a drip

A street corner

And the wind whispers on desolate front stoops.

The Sun meets the front main door of buildings

Ju no, where Morris and Jerome Ave kiss

Mugged up buzzers

Waiting fifteen minutes 

For someone to buzz you in, was an average day.

Meanwhile, Estefanie goes to the nearest bodega

Buys a dollar worth of candy

Y una botella de Frambuesa

Wearing Chanclas y mama’s bata

The beginning of una tarde de verano en Nueva Yol.

Moreno llama Franklin,

Franklin yells up the third-floor window

Where all the sheets and gramma panties are hanging out to dry 

On the cable wire tied to the fire escape. 

Mira Toni baja que comienza la fiesta

Franklin, Moreno, Toni and

Everyone comes down with shorts

White t-shirts

No shoes

Beach chairs

And a cooler full of Coronas y esquimalitos.

One empty can of Café Bustelo

Rainbow colored lenguas sticking out

A strong Grip

Rinsed down

Every Honda that passed by, New York Style.

Free car washes

No membership pool party

No fighting for spots on the sand at Connecticut beaches

Con Mami’s old dingy blanket.

Fire hydrants booming like waterfalls

Sprinkling hope 

And cooling down our accents

Reminding us of home.

The unity of palm trees

Drip down our faces

In between the laughter of the children

Uno siempre diciendo

Mojame a mi

The un-required sunscreen

We spent an entire afternoon on concrete.

Bachata, merengue, bursting through the sub woofers

From trunks of every other Honda Civic,

Dodge Caravan,

Es un Verano en Nueva Yol.

The story my girl Yazmin

And I told the kids en el barrio

While sitting on the bench 

Staring at the fire hydrants

The city locked down.

Those were the summer afternoons we discovered hope away from home.A

Astrid Ferguson is an Afro-Latina, Haitian and Dominican, emerging poet, author of two poetry anthologies, Molt and The Serpent’s Rattle, residing in the outskirts of Philadelphia, PA. She is a mom of two boys and wife to an emerging Philly Artist, Jerel Ferguson. She inspires awareness, healing and hope for all Afro-Latinas out there still struggling to find their voice.



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