Questions for the Night Drinker
He is only one of 164 celebrating with cups of pulque
on this fragment discovered deep underground.
And so, alone, as a singular celebrant,
why not imagine drinking agave on top of Popocatepetl,
or sharing his wide cup decorated with ancient Goddesses,
with Mayahuel herself, as the eleven serpents writhe
about her 400 breasts.
You can guess at his tongue
as he opens his mouth to drink--
or is he about to sing?
O night drinker, will you chant the story
of Gods hurling unfortunates into volcano fire… ?
I want to ask so many questions--
but you simply answer vas a ver --
ready to dance in syncopated
rhythms accelerating, vas, vas, vas
your hand clapping a ver, a’ver
vas’’a’ver. You hold the cup,
your eyes so widely open
as we watch. Tell us what you see.
Editor's Note: Read more about mezcal and art in Cholula, Mexico, here.
Kitty Jospé has authored many books and her work has appeared in numerous local and national journals. Bilingual in French/English, (MA French Literature, NYU; worked in Belgium for the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design) she retired from teaching French in 2006 to pursue an MFA (Pacific University, OR). She gives tours in both languages as docent at the Memorial Art Gallery; lectures on language and art as tools for deeper understanding and offers weekly poetry appreciation courses at the public library since February 2008.
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