Poem by Angela Acosta

May 15, 2023

The Hope You Left Me

I spent the better half of a dissertation chapter
grappling with the fact that the future women 
wrote about, clamored for, and glimpsed in
quiet moments gathered for companionship
has not yet arrived some hundred years later.

Perhaps I am too optimistic when I write
about Spanish and Latin American women, these
poetisas, modernas, sinsombreristas,
poets, modern women, the ones who took their hats off
a world and two generations away.

When I traveled across an ocean
to visit Castilian and Andalusian landscapes 
that populated their diaries and minds,
I remember the sting of unfulfilled dreams,
marriages, exile, and misattributions.

They have taught me what it is like to be young,
flying on an airplane with its frisson of possibility.
They have held me in the grief of missed opportunities 
and the fears of being female.

They have told me in many ways and dialects
that we may not have reached liberation,
may not be fully able to live as we wish,
but we are not alone in this anguish 
for we gain new companions in each found manuscript.

About Angela Acosta

Angela Acosta (she/her) is a bilingual Latina poet who holds a Ph.D. in Iberian Studies from The Ohio State University. She is author of Summoning Space Travelers (Hiraeth Publishing, 2022) and Fourth Generation Chicana Unicorn (Dancing Girl Press, 2023).

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