Tayve Neese

The Swayers of Belize

Hidden, wandering the tilled jungle yard
their twisting, flailing limbs are leathered bobbins

leaving no stitch.

The building sits on stilts. Plywood’s gone to rot,
tin roof to rust, beds are laid out on the dirt under the sun

where the committed age and eat and sleep.

some dreaming of the salt of nearby mangroves
or drowning in the Sibun.

Some cry over stars,
the eyes that are always watching.

Downs afflicted with extended jaws,

shadow the abrupt motions
of the schizophrenics, the raped women,

who wash themselves over and over in the dirt.

During rain they gather under the crooked building,
mosquitoes surrounding their heads like an aura,

wings loud at ear, and in unison to the buzzing

some will sway and some will hum
to malaria’s sweet cantata.