Valentines: “Floodwaters in America” by Gita Labrador

Floodwaters in America

You are kissing a boy
whom you will someday
marry, maybe
ten years from now. 
You’ll fly me to your dream
wedding, minus
Barong Tagalog and
Huling El Bimbo at the reception,
deemed pointless remnants 
of a life left behind.

Back here I am dreaming 
of your skin made golden 
by beginnings of Bay Area 
summer, waiting for you 
to come home with the rain.
Here is less alive without you around: 
everything brown and cracked, 
everyone thirsty. The veins of Manila
once teeming with gifts from 
sky and sea, now run dry 
of your presence: a wasteland without 
your swirling water-hair.

In America you are kissing him 
goodbye with every intention 
to return, and here I am
thinking of how nice it would be
to marry you:
to be forever wrapped
in the monsoon 
of your arms, 
to call you

my refuge overflowing
in the middle of
San Francisco.

About Gita Labrador 

Gita Labrador writes from the Philippines. Her work has previously been published in Feral Journal, Glass, Scum Mag, and elsewhere. She lives in Quezon City, where she teaches reading and creative writing classes for children.