Renewal ©Michelle Hackel, 2009

Renewal ©Michelle Hackel, 2009

Everything must be imagined
from what little’s left:
Mayan plazas

bustling as the first Spanish
ships appeared—now
only a jumble

of stones to ground
our guide’s pride
in ancient ties.

Motioning toward palms
of a new roof thatched
with his own hands

he spots a huge iguana
perfectly alert
clutching a tree

rooted in rubble, spines
on its neck erect.
In the pidgin

Spanish we both speak,
he offers to poach
one and meet

again just outside the ruins,
steaks he swears
tender as pollo

or snake.

©Christian Knoeller, 2009

Christian Knoeller has just returned from the Riverwalk in San Antonio, you all, which he says was crawling with English teachers with both NCTE and NWP in town.  There he was asked by Mary Nicolini, the Executive Director of Indiana Teachers of Writing–who had apparently flown all the way to Texas expressly to extend the invitation in person–to present a workshop for TC’s at ITW’s Winter Writers Retreat in March. Spring semester, he’ll offer a new graduate course at Purdue: “Writing in Middle and Secondary Schools.”  Recently, he delivered a paper “Journeying Toward the Source: Indigenous Language in Erdrich’s Books and Islands in Ojibwe Country” at the Purdue Indigenous Voices Symposium.  His essay, “I’ll be an Indian:  Rereading Roethke’s North American Sequence,” is to appear in a special Theodore Roethke Centennial issue of Midwest Miscellany from the Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature, and he has new poetry forthcoming in a number of journals including Iron Horse, Harpur Palate, and the Evansville Review.

3 Responses to “Thanksgiving Day, Isla de Cozumel by Christian Knoeller”

  1. theresasanders Says:

    Your poem is lovely.

  2. Liane Cismowski Says:

    Iguana cocinada en horno – carne pibil. Did you try it?

  3. Tureeda Says:

    Your poem reminds me of a dream.
    Peaceful lovely

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