Project: 43 Eclectic

Once Upon a Cuarentañera

Max: It was dark in the kitchen. I struggled to stack multiple bottles of just-opened Champagne and glasses into my arms before heading back into the crowd. Paolo appeared out of nowhere. “You must really love her,” he said. My mind couldn’t help but downshift into first gear. It played back the time you got your lip stuck in a coffee Thermos lid while driving — it had snapped on like a turtle. “Yes,” I said to Paolo, “she is family, and the one friend I have known the longest.” And this is why I agreed to host a “Cuarentañera.”

Why the Pigs Are on the South Side

Nogales, Arizona, is a shared hunting ground. Border patrol collaborates with ICE, Homeland Security, and the National Guard. Together with their SUVs, heavy firepower, and technology they track immigrants who have crossed the border from Mexico. And in the same rugged, high desert land, hunters with their SUVs, heavy firepower, and technology hunt wild pigs called javelina. We are the among latter group of hunters.

A Recalibrated Zero

I taste bone.
My mouth and hands are coated with meat grease.
And I am cold. We are very very cold.

Wool scratches my neck, but the warmth should make up for it. I can feel the heat from a dog at our feet. As for the grease, it is oddly comforting. The alcohol cuts right through the cold with a different heat, a vibrating, clean heat. On this December night I can see our breath in the soft casts of moonlight coming through the fogged windows, the primary source of illumination.

Blue Spruce with a Snow Lining