They are not gone, they are on bricks
beneath plaster, beneath paint,
beneath posters and handbills fragile
abandoned to the sun and wind,
beneath the stenciled telephone, a face—
"Jesús, el teléfono del diablo"
"Mexico, poco real"
and startled black figures suspended
in a running tumble
past creeping vines turning
what was once a wall
into a crumbling spine
blackened by the repeating,
always humid afternoon.
When the day is done I open my window to the street
stir my brush into the sleeping paint and begin again.