The woman I loved held me close
while the man I loved drove us down to Oaxaca, Mexico
and we were listening to the news on the radio.
"The disgraced vet fled Arlington Cemetery,
after defiling our war dead,
brought home from Normandy's shore
and his grave is now empty
to the horror of God and Nation."
I felt so cold
even nestled under her chin,
while he rubbed my knee
reaching over the driver's seat.
Their sweet faces were lit by the glow of our car's headlights in front
and unyielding high-beams behind us.
Unnatural love, the radio said,
about the living vet
and his beloved dead.
My boyfriend winced and
reached for she who held his hand
like it was made of platinum
and he held hers like it was forgotten gold,
but I was their cave of ice cold diamonds, sapphires, and rubies.
Unnatural, they called it.
Necklaces that shine under the chins of
empresses and baronesses
and gold metals pinned on broken bodies
do not grow on trees.
Unnatural, they called it,
the love they have for me.
Unnatural was the devil's shoal,
that freezing beach at Normandy,
where I was shot dead for him to see.
We'll be in Mexico soon,
he assures us with fear on his lips and
defiant of disgust and judgement,
that there's nothing they can do
once we're over the border.
She tells me that the beach where we're going
and the waters blue.
The people, he says,
and the fruit is so fresh
it burns your tongue.
Just a few more miles, they both assure themselves,
their hands were clasped together on my knee
white knuckled in the intensifying headlights behind us.
If we three are unnatural
then let all be factory manufactured
and as plastic as their tired smiles
when the border agent asks too many questions.
For to me, this love is as real
as our tears and laughs
when the radio stopped hissing the judgements of American news
and began singing Pedro Infante's 'Esta Noche'.
All went dark behind us on the road to Oaxaca,
with purple skies on the horizon
promising the warmth of blue beaches ahead.