The idea was good,

or nobody would have



3.2 million in dollars today

to claim the works of God



Black whale boulders beached

by Guanabara bay,


Dripping buildings with coastal

window holes,


Polka dot slums that cut the

jungle into picture frames,


The blue white yellow gold

of kept sand and moving foam,


A perpetual diorama if you

go to Niterói.


Without Christ, the hunchback hill

another splendid rock to draw behind

a neon drink.


But the praying ladies of Rio

got redemption right – the leaning

face, the human arms –


and torched their city with holy light

so we can  burn our skin unseen by the

would-be cliff, the unfinished crowd. 



Written 2013


  1. Sharp Little Pencil

    Ana, the farthest I got was Puerto Rico… would love to visit Rio one day. Your descriptions are gorgeous, and the bossa, “Corcovado,” as sung by Jobim, is one of my favorite songs ever. Thanks so much for visiting my blog, too! Loved this. Amy

  2. grapeling

    ana, the second to last stanza’s line breaks made me go back and re-read, twice, just to admire them – and as a whole the piece evokes desire to see what you’ve painted so vividly. ~ M

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