In The Beginning

In the beginning
I mostly prayed for the Transmilenio — the
bright red behemoth bus —
to arrive marginally on time.

“One minute. Let it come in one minute.”

And it always did.

But later, once I learned the ebb and flow of non-existent schedules, and that the flashing letters listing “7 min” really meant 2 or 5 or 8 or 9 or 12 or 30 seconds or eternity or never,

I learned to harness power:
the entropy of time.

In the beginning
I huddled in a brick room under unfamiliar blankets as jet engines roared overhead and rain pounded concrete and I had no idea how to orient myself in metropolis space or time or humanity.

But later
I learned when to be resilient and when to relent,
when my soul was screeching and strung together with whispers.

I walked confidently in sunny rain, emboldened by the umbrella in my stained purple backpack, a backpack nary a bogotano or bogotana would wear: but it slung around my front so perfectly, refusing pickpocket whims.

In the beginning, the triangle of discontent swelled between my ribcage and chest, yelling screaming dying exerting all along I DON’T BELONG.

But later, once the uncalibrated measurement of memory receded, dually dulled and emboldened by sickly sweet coffee and quotidian quail eggs heaped on hamburgers,

Later, so much later — or was it really right away? — Bogotá enveloped me, as it invariably does for those who grit through the uncertainty of seconds and hours and days and weeks until months arrive, to become another home, another anguished landscape to love.

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