Freckled Mariposa by A Elliott
The weight of a Ballet Folklorico skirt around my six-year-old body
I learn how to pose in the semblance of a kiss.
Beneath a sombrero, I giggle when Jose makes fart sounds
(he is the only one who doesn’t tease my freckled face)
A high school party, a boy opens an oven, says
Any Jews want to jump in?
He doesn’t know my name is Hebrew,
has never prepared charoset for Seder.
(I tell my landlord I have family from Mexico
he wants me to explain why they are lazy)
I regret falling silent—
the sting won’t fade, my speckled cheeks
(Once my arms ached holding
wings of blue broadcloth around me)
Avra Elliott is a writer and toymaker from New Mexico. Elliott’s work has appeared in Ilanot Review, Shadowgraph Quarterly, Tinderbox, Noctua Review, and Tupelo Quarterly, and is forthcoming from Barrow Street. Elliott received her MFA in creative writing from Warren Wilson College.