It was warm there,  
Gibraltar warm, and at night  
my sister cooled her feet against  
the damp stucco walls. My mother,  
heavy with me, moved from room  
to room, sealing off drains from water bugs,  
placing glass shards on the windowsill  
to deter marauding gypsies.  
On the six-inch tv, Franco's face  
beamed at her like a dark-eyed god, and  
there was no meat for the stew.  

My family wished upon an antique  
globe, waited for the day they'd leave  
their pink land, and sail past the serpents  
that ducked and spit under waves. They knew  
the globe's tiny legend held more for them than  
norte and sur, knew its roundness contained  
their pregnant passage to a new world. 

Copyright 2000, Brandy Bauer 

Brandy Bauer received her MFA in 1999 from Minnesota State University, Mankato. She currently works as an editor in Washington, DC.