“The Boy’s Face in Toledo”

A Poem by Desirée Alvarez

June 3, 2020  By Desirée Alvarez

Tenderly he lowers the dead man
to his coffin. Boy angelic trusting the body
to an actual angel who raises him through
a dilation in clouds. El Greco paints hands
on the church wall with marvelously long
slender fingers, and faces with wide eyes
awakened from the dream of resembling
nothing any mortal has ever seen.


Raft of Flame by Desirée Alvarez is available now from Omnidawn. 

Desirée Alvarez
Desirée Alvarez
Desirée Alvarez is a painter and poet living in New York City. Her second book, Raft of Flame, won the Lake Merritt Poetry Contest and was published by Omnidawn in April 2020. Her first book, Devil’s Paintbrush, won the 2015 May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Award. Her poetry is anthologized in What Nature (MIT Press, 2018) and Other Musics: New Latina Poetry (University of Oklahoma Press, 2019). She has published poems in Poetry, Massachusetts Review, Boston Review, Fence and The Iowa Review, and received the Glenna Luschei Poetry Award from Prairie Schooner. Alvarez’s paintings are currently on view at Brooklyn Botanic Garden Conservatory Gallery through November 2020. Celebrating magical connections between animals, plants and humans, her work has received three fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, as well as awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and European Capital of Culture. Alvarez teaches at CUNY, The Juilliard School and Poets House.

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