• Ruby Nambo

A Day in Belize

I rise from my bed, 5am—

from years of routine,

a slow walk to the bathroom,

and I stare into a small square mirror,

the mess of slumber—

my hair, an easy fix.

Like Fred Rogers,

I tell myself, It’s a wonderful day.

Shorts on, dressed in my black

CWU t-shirt, New Balance

shoes, Maui hat,

I open the door,

descend stairs to a rising sun,

a bench swing, still wet

from midnight storms and screams

from the young ladies downstairs.

I pass through the bench swing,

arrive at a bar, and hear—

Buenos dias.

Buenos dias, Please, can I have

a cup of coffee? No cream. no sugar.

I smile at the woman.

Absolutely sir, she says,

and I sit at a table,

facing the swing, listening to music—

birds chirping, roosters crowing,

a breeze in the branches—

and I notice clouds,

blue turns to gray—

just like in Washington State.

Drip drop,

I hear a small drop,

another, and another.

until it is the rapid spill

of pinto beans.

Minutes pass,

me staring at clouds until

I am served black coffee and decide

to walk toward the town

market—two stands open.

Buenos dias señor, a vendor says.

Buenos dias señor. How much

are the bananas?

For you, ten for a dollar,

I placed twenty in a bag.

Are you feeding a family of monkeys?

I laugh. No, I am choosing

to eat them.

The concern vendor watches me,

but I pay for my bananas

and leave the stand.

I return to my spot at the bar.

Drenched, I open the bag

with my delicious bananas.

One by one, I remove them all

and place them on the table.

I open one banana

and eat it completely.

Slowly, with durable hands,

I eat all twenty bananas

and return to my room.

I change into a white Izod

short sleeve button up,

Levi’s jeans, Nike white

calf socks, same New Balance shoes.

This time a straw hat from Havana.

I snatch my bag from my chair

and leave the room to wait—

the same table as before.

Good morning, someone says to me.

Good morning, how are you?

Good, she says, And you?

I glance at the blue sky,

the golden warmth of sun,

hear birds, movement

of leaves in unison with air,

from afar, vehicles honking,

their rapid travel. I smile, respond—

So far, satisfied.

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