I left my love at the airport

I left my love at the airport

They say the baggage was never claimed.

I must have forgotten to write my address

To the lover of which I stayed.


I left my love at the airport

Where kisses whizzed past each other

to reach their destination.

Rumor has it, mine just sat at a mobile phone

charging station.


I left my love at the airport

Riding the escalators by itself,

Never turning to look behind

to see I was walking out.


I left my love at the airport

Trapped between the whole world and one

small town

Scared to exit the world of adventure

and put its feet on the ground.


I left my love at the airport

To be picked up at a later time

But the Lyft driver cancelled

And for now, at least,

My love learns how to fly.


-Jasmine N. Duran


The Ruins

The streets are layered with leftover rain; thick with fumes of wet sand and burnt gas. I could scoop the clouds out of the air and add it to my midnight glass of café, but I have chosen to stare at the florescent glow instead. The city leaves little to be seen. Tonight my world is 31 miles to the east and to the west.

There is nothing else.

We soar past the others driving at an irregular pace, but it feels right. All the lights are one continuous line from Antigua to home. The car smells of burnt rubber and gas. Fumes which seem pleasant and consistently forbidden in my world. I inhale as an rebellion would, slowly and shy. I welcome every toxic chemical of the night into my existence.

Welcome to The Ruins.

Lost in Translation

She sits on the stoop with brows furrowed into a knot. She drops a tear that belongs to her mother and she cannot begin to voice the words that allow me to understand her. She throws her arms in rage because she thinks I cannot hear her. She climbs to her highest peak and bellows the words of her ancestors. Her cloud of emotion sits right above her head. The lightning strikes once and triggers for an oncoming storm.

She bursts.

More than words, a culture and values I do not understand.

I try to speak, but the words I find sound nothing like hers. I try to breathe, my chest tight, my face flushed.

My storm begins.

Slowly at first then thunder rumbles as an instigator.

She strikes.

Never twice in the same spot

She leaves scars unusual; burns of burden

And invites divine sanctions to curse me into shame. 

We call to our God but cry different names.

She whispers her hate. I whisper my forgiveness.


The day seems more like night. Today and all days the sun dims darker as if to say, you wish.

“You wish you could see the light I provide for the rest of the world. You wish you could reap the benefits of my nutrient-rich rays as you stand in the shadows of my clouds.”

You dip your knees into the mud of the earth and the rain. And you wish something would grow. But there is no sun my seedling. There is no sun.


Purgatory until purified.

Bring me my deliverance. Wrap it in succulent spikes.

Tell me I am not worth it one more time.

Paint it grey, but give me rose-colored vision. I will escape your pain most days,

Again and again.