• Grant Handgis ~ Author/Poet

"Switching Titles"

Switching titles

It is not so hot today

with the clouds partitioning the Mexican sun

from my sunburned skin

and the breeze through the apartment window tells

of a cooler night ahead

A Gringo without air conditioning

can this be? spoken, silently

through their quizzical stares

as this Gringo makes way

along the stone features

and ancient paint, an apartment

meant for simpler cousins

and plainer folk

of Mazatlan

My few coins, and peso notes

share no magic from the North

yet possess some spirit

to command such attention of their

own, moving attending locals to

shinier smiles

and helpful words of assistance

from awkward attempts to speak their

tongue, yet were they to know

in my country

I am the server of others, the

one who knows the value

of a smile

and helpful words to earn

a bonus, or a tip, as

means to eat each day

or pay the rent, no shame

in that

or leaving a few extra

centavos, or peso

or two

in thanks to a Gringo's

cousins, in a wondrous

place, where everything

is done with gusto

and formal greetings

and even poor kin

are able to feel a troubled

world, from the other side

of the table.

Copyright 1998-2011

More poems found their way onto the pages, with each trip to the beach, or sidewalk cafe brought new insights and renewed energy to absorb everything Mexico. It was also a wonderful time of introspection, which was not only cleansing, but cathartic for me. The more I wrote on the things I was seeing and feeling, the more I became aware of being in touch with myself, my feelings.

Poetry can be a healing process, and it can also be vexing. That has mostly to do with the state of mind of the poet at any given time, and the level of difficulty in finding the right words for what the poet happens to be feeling. I will say that there were far more moments of joyous creation than those of writing angst. I was in enchanted territory scooping up as much local energy as I could, while pondering the many vagaries of love. For a poet, it doesn't get any better than that.


g. Michael Handgis Photography


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