To a Construction Worker in the Hills of Portugal Near the Sea
You hack at your ancient red hills
like those creatures who eat parts of their own bodies
digging for the gold of overpopulation, pollution, and upward mobility
for 60 escudos a day
to deliver the Northerner’s rich dream
and at sunset sit in the old plaza deafened by swallows
and return to the crumbling tile-roofed box of earth beyond the hill
and at dawn once again set the long white caterpillar of villas
creeping toward you to devour you.
Iris Litt’s newest chapbook of poems is Snowbird from Finishing Line Press. Previous books include What I Wanted to Say from Shivastan Press and Word Love from Cosmic Trend Publications. A recent short story publication is “Pissed Off” in the Saturday Evening Post Fiction Contest Anthology. She has had short stories, poems and articles in Mud Season Review, North Sea Press, Texas Poetry Calendar, Saturday Evening Post, Travelers’ Tales, Confrontation, The Widow’s Handbook, The London Magazine, the new renaissance, Earth’s Daughters, Rambunctious Review and many others. Awards include the Atlantic Monthly Award for College Writing, first prize in The Virtual Press short story contest, and French Bread poetry award from Pacific Coast Journal. She was a finalist in the Variant Literature 2020 Chapbook Contest. She has taught creative writing as an adjunct at SUNY/Ulster, Bard College, Arts Society of Kingston, Writers in the Mountains, New York Public Library and many other venues in New York City and the Hudson Valley. She lives in Woodstock, NY and winters on Anna Maria Island in Florida, which was the inspiration for Snowbird.