Alli Cruz


I pour black beans
onto rice until my plate
is bathed in a black
lake. The first I swam by myself
was in the Philippines — a place called
Hidden Valley Springs. As we got into the car,
I asked my Tita Lisa
If it’s hidden, how will we know
when we get there?
How will we

a body?

Land linked only
to itself. I recognize myself—
body whole & connected—
in the nights Ma calls me from home;
her voice, a lullaby. Reconciling
disparate parts.

Alli Cruz is a Filipina-Cuban American poet. She is a Levinthal scholar, currently studying English & Creative Writing at Stanford University. Her work has appeared in Hobart Pulp and The Louisville Review.