Come on Angel, Luis Cuauhtémoc Berriozábal

Charles Hood, Angel with Bracelet


Come on Angel


Come on down
to the sharp blades,
like your nightmare,
let there be blood
in the water,
in the green of your
eyes, the dark eyebrows
and eyelashes,
in a fountain.
Take two seconds.
Do not brawl
with the walls.
Have a seat
and tighten your
seatbelt. Your wings
will feel the blades.
Come on down.
How the head rolls
from your body,
like a pomegranate
seed, like a bloody tooth
on death’s road.

Sob and sob.
Kiss your cross.
Let there be blood.
Mute your moans.
Be civil.
It is inevitable.
Like the dead,
you will not live.

Come with friends
and strangers.
Bless your wounds,
feel your thighs,
black and blue
like two skies,
come on angel
and bring your halo.

Luis Cuauhtémoc Berriozábal


Review by Robbie Gamble

I love the urgency, the exhortatory tone of this poem. I tend to think of angels as aloof, dispassionate, otherworldly beings, but here the poet is demanding that the angel engage in the blades and blood of our human existence on the poet’s terms. It’s only after the tactile experiences of seatbelt, wounds and bruises that we get the wonderful simple request of the last line, almost as an afterthought: “and bring your halo.”


Review by Debra Kaufman

I’m a sucker for angel poems that wrestle with the reader, as this poem does. The speaker calling on or conjuring an angel to come to an earth of sharp blades, blood in the water, a high-speed chase. There’s a mercilessness in the human voice commanding the angel: “Sob and sob. / Kiss your cross.”  The hard “k” sounds, the rhymes of “brawl” and “wall,” and the reminder that death is inevitable then turn and give way to a different kind of invitation: to be with friends, wounds and all, and the last line rings beautifully, to “bring your halo.”




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