On the Bus To San Cristobal De las Casas
Legs cramped, neck screwed down,
not lonely though sick of bouncing,
I listen to a baby cry.
His head is a bathysphere,
his face is as brown as a coffee bean.
The jungle drips everywhere
except inside this clammy bus.
We rise and fall on macadam roads, hug
the seats, observe the slash and burn.
His mother has beautiful oily hair.
He twists in her arms,
grabs fists full of air
and scatters them like seeds on the driver,
who, scratching his shoulder blade
with a ballpoint pen, aims us down
more steamy mountain switchbacks.