Because We Come from Everything #3

Posted by Coffee House Press on

In support of “Because We Come From Everything: Poetry & Migration,” the first formalized programming of the Poetry Coalition, Birds, LLC; Coffee House Press; Graywolf Press; and Milkweed Editions have partnered to curate a selection of poems on the theme of migration. Each featured poem will be released on Milkweed’s website and shared by all participating organizations on social media. A new poem will be distributed each Thursday in March and April, concluding on National Poetry Month’s Poem in Your Pocket Day, April 27. The poems will be made available in pocket-poem size and distributed at several Minneapolis and St. Paul independent bookstores, including:

Magers & Quinn  |  Milkweed Books  |  Moon Palace Books  |  Subtext Books

#3: Chris Santiago


An immigrant’s son I have ears like the blind.

Music comes easily; night frightens me.

Home late from the hospital, she comes to my door— I fake sleep.

She sings a soothing song in the language I never learned:

prayers against rain. Catalog of mythic birds.

As many names for music as English has for theft.

Using them I invent a country with only two citizens.

The word I choose for mother sounds like the one for dream.

Chris Santiago Picture

Chris Santiago is the author of Tula, winner of the 2016 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry

Join the conversation and share your favorite poems about migration in the comments below and on social media by using #WeComeFromEverything. 

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