J. Estanislao Lopez

Reconsidering Plato’s Cave

My opinion?
Plato never
set foot
inside a cave.

Inside a cave,
there’s no
Only you

and your fear
of closure,
of what you
cannot see

and, so, cannot
predict. The slick,
unforgiving rock
could not be

more honest. It’s
the grass
that authors 
our delusions,

the earth
as if
it were meant

to lie on
and not in.

In Praise of the Insects that Remain Hidden in the Grass

A wren fetches one last serving of insects
in the yard as dusk stirs competing appetites. 

Some insects attempt to fly away
not knowing they’ve played themselves

straight into the wren’s mouth; others
stay hidden under damp knots of grass.

I rise from my chair, where I had been
making a meal of my regrets. I leave

the wet shelter of shame, spreading wings
of self-forgiveness. I mistake the blankness

of the air for freedom.

J. Estanislao Lopez                            

J. Estanislao Lopez is a Pushcart-nominated poet whose work has appeared in literary magazines such as The New YorkerPloughshares, Harvard Review OnlineThe Shallow Ends, and elsewhere. His poems have been anthologized in the Bedford Compact Introduction to Literature, 12th Ed. and in the forthcoming BreakBeat Poets Vol. 4: LatiNext. He holds an MFA from the Warren Wilson Program for Writers and currently lives in Houston.