the poetry that matters

Victor David Sandiego

Victor David Sandiego lives in the high desert of central México where he writes, studies, and plays drums with jazz combos and in musical / poetry collaborations. His work appears  in various journals (Cerise Press, Crab Creek Review, Floating Bridge Review, Off The Coast, Generations Literary Review, Poetry Salzburg Review, others) and has been featured on public radio. He is the founder and current editor of Subprimal Poetry Art. His website is victordavid.com.


The Hollow Portion Of His Petition


Priest opens a desert, his fist a red fish, regards

with one eye the heavens while sun crackles

tattoos on his face.  “I beg you destroy my affection,” he says

in blood, and sand flows in gentle ripples from his morning

feet. The ceremony that devoured his son casts

a rut to the far edge of the earth. The crease that canyons

his life into two pieces swarms with bees. But he cannot consume

the knife, for habit of existence. He cannot swallow his own cruel stake.



The Elephant Death Of War


To kill

the lumbering beast nobody laments his war

power absent & fathers, sons crushed by wide rivering feet

celebrate death I sketch on my skin for this iconic relic.


¿Who will?


Only gravediggers grieve starving elephant death of war withering

symphony of dominance shrivels into an angular knife of night.


Patrols on half-hitched roads. Frantic, professional lust

rushes their fever, lungs of their elephant war comfort stirring

shadows, tusks through their scarlet ashes.


My elephant chained to an elder Eucalyptus, no food, no drink;

I fix tumbled fences, tend Jasmine pots. My war elephant weakens

to pleated warrior knees – trampled ghosts of drunken trumpet stump legs




from antechambers of worlds against an angry sprint

to reunite children of blacksmiths and shopkeepers

with a fallopian earth, bury blooming skulls in red sand flowers

slaughter war-troubled questions of his heart.


Evaporating elephant breath a broken string of sweat drops to his side

in the brown grass closing closets of his brass and bronze veins.


And I know I should rejoice! But three imprisoned tears

flee my pearly eye

follow furrows of a low gloaming sky

to moisten his vast, panting elephant hide.



The One Act Play of Man




A dark tunnel, a man inside a cage.


Cage is shaped like God, soft shadows of red light.




A scream hurls from a sling


(inside the prisoner’s heart)


a God shaped like man counts pebbles into a wooden bucket.


The prisoner – shaped like a desert that reaches from the first

(birth) tunnel of daybreak to nourish the body – exhales.




Night is alone on foot, weeping into the grass.


Meadow receives the rain to nourish the body.


Grieving, the underground statue




to wipe the stone with a clean cloth tongue.




Celebration pours forth a symphony from vocal cups. The foot of the prisoner

amputated to wander, orates on hillsides and in the villages.


Alone, the body of prisoner exits the cage. The search

begins, is shaped like a regiment of angels.




They trample through darkness to retrieve sons and daughters

that were harvested


(with long coats and knives)


long ago, from the womb.



Stubborn Complacency Of Our Vision


Always: we laugh

and at no time consider that our laughter

might one day run

as frightened quail into the galloping path of horses.


Daily: we exile our future

into the remote corners of our world.


Our insensible contentment:

complete.  A red fruit thuds on the ground: we eat.

Water tickles the rocks: we drink.

Night crawls the hills, buries

the dead legs of day:

we sleep

and dream of another tomorrow

as faithful as the hours of sun and shadow

we have so endured.


We never hunger for another piece of life

where days and surprises slide

from hidden corners

of the city.


Until she soaks us

in a rain

of small shiny faces


and each of her inseparable voices

scratches like a lone cicada

but in multitudes

weave a symphonic tapestry among us.


Our lakes then fill with shouts

and our chests mingle

with dread

for the exuberant gift of flutes

that elevates our shores.


All the while to wager:

if the death

of our dull strength

and our utterly vigorous boredom

might threaten our existence

and crack

our stubborn bones

or paint them once again with sunrise.







to the brown account of children Grandfather raised

from earthworms:


At first, no life


mark shivers among bits of them

that (sliced into slivers) unite into a blind shadow.


But peel


your gloom from a hillside, flip it on its black writhing back;

wipe the crusted dirt with sunlight.


This is bread


for underfed thoughts. This is the unwashed goliath

that slaps a tombstone from your foot.


As membrane


we create life with grunts and thrusts; as skin

we embrace our symbiotic bones.


Read them

as bleached sticks in the loam:


Here points the fibula of Daniel to the lion; here the radius

and tarsals of Alexander



the tubercular milk.




                                                                                                             January 13, 2014