Green Hills Literary Lantern




When the Woodward Park attendant offered you the handicap rate


for Daddio




your brown face turned red like the tomatoes you harvested

and the metal of your brace twinkled like the shine of the machine

that mangled your arm. She smiled kindly enough

while your girlfriend laughed and said at least we’ll get in

at a discount, but I could see the back of your neck,

taut with tendons.


To be nice and smile and say no, thank you went against everything

in your gut. Even so, that attendant leaned all her weight

on thin pale arms, reached her head out the window

of the guard booth and glanced down at your left arm rested

on the door of the car, bound and supported with leather straps

from the web of your hand to just below the elbow, the middle and ring

fingers held loosely together, all the while your huge right hand with perfectly

cut nails, lean and heavy with muscles patiently waited, held out

the full price of admission for one car.


I wanted to scream at her, you should see him peel

an orange! You’ve never seen such precision, how with one

hand and a sharp knife he gracefully orbits the bright peel,

seems to barely touch it and then puts down the knife.

His thumb nudges the top just under the imprint of the stem

and the peel falls away, a curved slide, like an Escher print

only seconds later to lie, seamlessly back in shape,

sitting on the table as if it had just fallen from the tree.





Sarah A. Chavez is a first year PhD student in Creative Writing with a focus in poetry at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln. Both her creative work and research interests are in ethnicity, the body, access, and border crossing, particularly in Chicano/a literature. She earned her BA in English from California State University, Fresno and her MA in Creative Writing from Ball State University in Indiana. Currently she is working on a chapbook that focuses on and honors the community and environment of her hometown. Among others, her work can be found in the journals Bent Pin Quarterly and Spooky Boyfriend.