Hair always dyed a shade of youth and vigor,
remnants coloring the papery skin around her ears and forehead.
Little round body that tells the hard tale of Mexican women-
low to the ground for work and round in the hips for babies.
Breasts too small for her body and a heart muscle too weak for all that she would feel and experience.
Ankles swollen, eyes rheumy, thick glasses. Her Spanish not accepted; English not sufficient.
House dresses in so many flowered patterns, some shade of pink always on her lips- creeping through the lines forming there.

And she was beautiful. Magnificent. The Queen of my heart.
Love flowed from her like fire, consuming the windswept plains of my childhood.

It lit me from the nucleus of my soul, lifting me to higher plains, challenging me to reach out and engage with the hearts of people in a real and dangerous way…to be passionate about their souls to the point of forgetting mine.

Pour out that fire.
Empty yourself.
Give until you receive-
not from people, but from your Dios.
Be afraid (of spiders and snakes and la llorona)
but do not be afraid to love.
My Queen-
her DNA runs through me like wildfire, elevating me, giving me purpose.
I see it moving through me
and I gladly submit to its power.