When I ask the experts
“how much time do I have?”
I don’t want an answer in years
I must know if there are hours enough
to mend this relationship,
see a book all the way to its birthing,
stand beside my father
on his journey.
I want to know how many seasons of chamisa
will be yellow then grey-green
how many red cactus flowers
will bloom beside my door.
I do not want to follow language
like a dog with its tail between its legs.
I need time equated with music,
hours rising in bread,
years deep from connections.
The present always holds a tremor or the past.
Give me a handful of future
to rub against my lips.
— “Immigration Law” by Margaret Randall