Valentina was never ready—
when asked, she used to say:
“Cuando la vaca sobre la luna”
Waiting made her more adorable
with a recurring expectation
that she would be more lovely
each and every time we met.
She always found it impossible
to let go of loyal old friends,
who kept her laughing instead of crying.
They were her favorite audience—
watching her sing and improvise
Flamenco dances to clattering castanets.
So what if she’s an aerial gymnast—
she can’t fly high enough to lose me.
She’s elusive as a black feral cat,
and as mysterious as a telepathic gypsy.
She’s as hard to snag as a speckled trout
with two bare hands.
She always swings too high, and when she swings
too low, she hibernates. I will embrace her in mid air
or here on the ground and never, ever let her go.
I promise her a perfumed rose garden
where she will always be my Queen Bee.