ISSN 2692-3912

Older and Bitter: Some Poems from “Bias” (2015).





the marvels rest

and the moon moves the windows

i kiss your hair as if kissing the world’s mouth

but the viscous voice of winter

asks me not to persist like the ant i am

asks me to stop dreaming

and with eyes blackened by sleep and rage

i still wish by your side

to burn the sky

to extricate one tear from the sea




.[…] que todavia,

que todavia, se escuchen los gritos de nuestro amor

raúl zurita



when the day is over

i remember love as the glass of water spilled on a table

i feel the day oozing from my body

from the centre of life

when i lie down

i watch the night open over me

and think about love as god

screaming at us each day

birds make us grind our teeth

to tolerate everything

because for certain

it’s all too much

too much




at night i can the hear dust slide inside my head

fleeing through the organs

covering me

to calm the swing

of a body throbbing underneath

body of a son

i had to let go


old and bitter

a chair is growing inside me

look at the incomplete landscape

all the statements i’ve been


saved by dust

his death that grows

identical to the mother




i bite your elbows

i bite your knees

i slip through the looting of insomnia

a thunder of snow covers the animal of me

hidden in coordinates of yearning

where i lurk




the morning mist is my father

on his stretcher

waking up from the anesthestic


my father

a cloud with a needle

in its arm








my old scar hurts

my neck still hurts from your hooves

and the endless ivory of heaven

and your forest grin

with its mosswounds








outside my house

the hoarse waters of early morning

parade through our lips




his eyes tiger through the kitchen

he explains the beheading of childhood

inside me

falling into the unborn excavation

of myself




the days rise like arrows of barborous light

he bites and is torn away

and when he exits

i don’t know how

split i am

which arrow i am




for lou reed


we feed animals to live in the mind’s zoo

then we watch a movie

but really

all attention is drawn to the sudden inclination

we have to breathe underwater





we take the road he drives

his voice clear as a glass of water

i drink and the clouds stare at us

becoming salt

even the stones evaporate

and the sky is a demented pet

who loves us




dreamt of a pool of blood

and my sleeping body was a drawing in the background

a drawing that went out to bathe under a dislocated sun

a holy day to lie down beside you on the lounger

and say

—your love of death love has worked out well

sink your sweetened foot

afflicted by devotion






my dog transfigures into a corpse

i sleep with the anger of mud

chickens fall to the drain, flattened by my toys

a hundred sunsets laugh at me

trapped in the broken bone of a house

darkness running over my eyes

stagnated by a future, unarriving




Translated from Spanish by James Byrne

Sesgo. Ediciones Sin Nombre (Cuadernos de la Salamandra), 2015



Claudia Berrueto was born in 1978. She is a poet from Saltillo, in Coahuila, the north of Mexico. She is a fellow of the Foundation for Mexican Literature (2005-2006), and National Fund for Culture and Arts, (2009-2010/2011-2012). Her work has been included in the Anthology of Mexican Poetry: from the second half of the 20th century to the present (2014). Her collection, Polvo doméstico (Domestic Dust), won the national prize of poetry in Tijuana in 2009. Her latest collection, Sesgo (Bias), won the Iberoamerican Prize Fine Arts of the Poetry Carlos Pellicer in 2016, this book was reissued in Ecuador within the Alfabeto del Mundo Collection (La Castalia/Lineaimaginaria Ediciones) in 2021, and also in Chile (Cinosargo Ediciones) in 2022. Claudia is President of the Seminary of Mexican Culture in Arteaga, Coahuila. In 2018, she joined the National System of Art Creators. She is currently editorial coordinator of Dissemination and Cultural Heritage at the Autonomous University of Coahuila.


James Byrne is a british poet, editor, translator and visual artist. His most recent poetry collections are Places You Leave (Arc Publications, 2021), The Caprices, a response to Francisco Goya’s ‘Los Caprichos’ (Arc, 2019), Everything Broken Up Dances (Tupelo, US, 2015) and White Coins (Arc Publications, UK, 2015). He was the editor of The Wolf, an influential, internationally-minded literary magazine between 2002 and 2017. In 2012 he co-translated and co-edited Bones Will Crow, the first anthology of contemporary Burmese poetry to be published in English (Arc, 2012, Northern Illinois University Press, 2013) and he co-edited I am a Rohingya, the first book of Rohingya refugee poems in English. He is the co-editor of Atlantic Drift: An Anthology of Poetry and Poetics (Edge Hill University Press/Arc, 2017) and Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century, published by Bloodaxe in 2009. Byrne is currently Reader in Contemporary Literature at Edge Hill University.