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What We Know
            after "The Bus" by Frida Kahlo, 1929
by Michael G. Smith

Maybe she is mestizo,
this barefoot woman to my right.
I feel her eyes looking down
at my bag of monedas de plata.

Isn't it impolite to stare
at a man on a wooden bus?
Even if one thinks
he is a gringo capitalista?
But then, would I not have
un coche privado y conductor?
Pero no, maybe I am un médico
on my way to the orphanage.
Or thief who robbed a bank
moments before taking this seat.
We don't know, do we?
I have assumed too much
only to be surprised
by too many things
in mi corta vida.

Un hermosa día de otoño,
we know nada
about now or el futuro.
Snow is unknown here.
A streetcar might ram us,
la doncella to my left
thrown out of the bus,
el camino de todas nuestras vidas
altered forever.


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