of Texas connected to México
filled with scattered towns tucked beside
each other—Mission, La Joya, McAllen,
Edinburg, more—each a half hour
drive from the International bridge.

El Valle is a large place run by scrambling
citizens and residents and folks without
documents in secondhand vehicles, overrun
by palm trees, orange trees, and mezquite
trees, carpet grass replacing heat-dried
weeds, old gray buildings with spray
painted walls slowly being replaced
by beige Spanish architecture.

I never read Borderlands until last
night out of fear of what
I would discover.

That fear came true when I opened
the pages, flipped through them—

I am there.

Every pedazo de mi I did not know
how to voice was there:

              danger, fear, amor, my mezquite trees,
                           español, Tex-Mex, enforced inglés.
Magaly Garcia received an MFA in Writing & Publishing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She has been published in Along the River III, UTRGV’s The Gallery (2013, 2015), VCFA’s Synezoma, and Francis House. She lives in south-south Texas, and when she isn’t writing she is summoning fantasmas to haunt her cat and cactus.

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