José Enrique Medina

The Closed Bedroom

They lock you in your bedroom. You escape
to the snowy scene. Wind

shakes snow-bowed boughs & stirs
crystal chimes. Here, your father’s fingers,

stinking of cigarettes, will never touch
your knee. Here, your mother, calling you

faggot, will never find your ear. Besides,
you are not alone in this hoarse forest.

The wind shifts and readjusts
its scarf among branches.

You came here, not to drink
beauty—not even to avoid your papa’s

stink—but rather, if it’s possible, at least
an instant, to glimpse the back

of the old fisherman, pole on his
shoulder, who is always

moving. You sense him
walking among junipers. He is the echo

of the wind. He makes you breathe
winter, filling your lungs

with health and peace. Out
of the blue,

he begins to sing
in a strange language,

unfreezing the rivers
making the bobbing ice return the light.

Author Portrait

José Enrique Medina earned his BA in English from Cornell University. He writes poems, short stories and novels. His work has appeared in The Burnside Review, Pretty Owl Poetry, Reed Magazine, and other publications. When he is not writing, he enjoys playing with his baby chicks, bunnies and piglets on his farm in Whittier, California.

View the website of José Enrique Medina