How poems are lost and how to find them


I lost an elegy while I was slicing tomatoes

Lost it while I was washing the plate 

I ate the tomatoes in 

Lost it while I was making coffee 

and furiously adding milk 

to offset the caffeine jitters 

I lost a sonnet while I was writing copy 

For a company that sold armor 

to the police 

Lost it while I was buying tomatoes 

to replace the ones I ate 

Lost it while I was drinking water 

and washing my hands 

of the orange-red stains 

from tomatoes 

and selling police armor 

Five days ago, a few uniformed men 

came to put out a fire 

in the marketplace, my home 

an hour after it broke out 

It was almost as if 

by ember’s light 

the elegy I lost 

had found me


Heather Ann Pulido (she/her) is an indigenous writer from Northern Philippines. She is a Language and Literature graduate student who loves drinking, eating, and writing (not necessarily in that order). She also writes children’s stories and volunteers at a local organization dedicated to upholding indigenous peoples’ rights. Her poetry and prose have been published in the Philippine anthologies "Ani" and "Kimata."