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Rabelesiana

By Cristina Peri Rossi
(Translated from the Spanish by Elizabeth Rose)

She would love to eat the toes
off my left foot
with a smooth salsa de cerezas
and savour sucking each ossicle.

She would roast my right ankle
bound by a delicate string
with the finest herbs.

She would drink my menstrual blood
with a few drops of liquor
and a pinch of cinnamon.

She would brown my fists in the oven
drizzled with plum juice
and sundried currants.

She would fry my thighs in oil
and devour them in the evening
paired with a sweet wine.

Afterward – big as a cow
fatigued from the feasting –
she would begin to masticate
the large, nourishing bolus
satisfied by each swallow.

         If someone reproached her,
Having devoured what she loved,
eyes resplendent with pleasure, she would say,
“You are what you eat.”

This work first appeared in Quesadilla and Other Adventures: Food Poems (2019), edited by Somrita Urni Ganguly, published by Hawakal, India.

Bios:
Cristina Peri Rossi is a Uruguayan novelist, poet, and translator. Born in Montevideo, she has lived in Barcelona since the 1970s when she went into political exile. Peri Rossi has published nineteen books of poetry, earning her many literary prizes in the genre including the Rafael Alberti International Poetry Prize, the City of Torrevieja International Poetry Prize, and the Loewe Foundation International Poetry Prize.

Elizabeth Rose is in love with the impossibility of recreating meaning and sound across languages. She translates from Spanish and German into English and researches the intersections of translation, exile, and queer perspectives in literature. She received her MA from the University of Illinois in Translation Studies. Her work has appeared in Alchemy, Tupelo Quarterly and Raspa Magazine.

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For more stories, read Café Dissensus Everyday, the blog of Café Dissensus Magazine.

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