from ‘TRIPAS’

from ‘TRIPAS’

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Conduzco y conduces
—carpoolers & Catholics—
conduction wires to Latin.
 
“Brought together”
—heads bowed as if praying—
these women make
 
strange communion—
wafer after wafer,
paper-thin shavings from
 
ingots of germanium.
Solder-stitch to populate
breadboard to motherboard
 
or read ohm resistors
—by their bands of color—
in circuit board syntax.
 
Solid state switches—
a nascent ancient rotary
& tin can to starlight.

Chicana Cherríe Moraga writing
on her mother’s ‘piecework’
for the nearby electronics plant
 
explains how her mother nightly
sat before the TV ‘wrapping
copper wires into the backs of
 
circuit boards.’ Braiding, I thought,
to parse & plait those wires
that would light the very images
 
she watched. I then looked up
in Cosmo that knot-work.
French, Dutch, Halo, Fishtail,
 
Milkmaid, Spiral, & Braid to Bun
—those chongos my nana made
over the years—the yank
 
& tugged-tie, the brush-work
through the hair of sus hijas
that sometimes produced a spark.

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