She left her phone charging
under her pillow while she went

to buy a pan con frijol for the niña.
When she came back it was gone.

No vale nada except the numbers
inside. That’s the only way she has

to contact her family in El Salvador
and the United States. We know it was
someone here. One of our own.
The door was locked while she was gone.

Why would you steal from a compañera?
If not for the shelter, we would all be

on the street. The Lord is watching
you and knows you are the thief.

He will pour his curses down on you
ladrona. You will see, Perra. Your ways

will never prosper. The Lord is just
and he will never move his hand from you.

We are his witnesses. You will
never enter the United States! Not one foot!
Abigail Carl-Klassen’s work has appeared in ZYZZYVA, Catapult, Cimarron Review, Guernica, Willow Springs, Aster(ix) Huizache, and Kweli, among others, and is anthologized in IMANIMAN (Aunt Lute), New Border Voices (Texas A&M University Press) Goodbye Mexico: Poems of Remembrance (Texas Review Press) and Outrage: A Protest Anthology for Injustice in a 9/11 World (Slough Press). She earned an MFA from the University of Texas El Paso’s Bilingual Creative Writing Program and taught at El Paso Community College and the University of Texas El Paso. She is a staff writer with Poets Reading the News and her chapbook Shelter Management is now available from dancing girl press.

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