Learning How to Make Love, by Denise Duhamel

This couple couldn’t figure it out. 
The man licked his wife’s genitals while she stared straight ahead. 
The woman poked her husband’s testicles with her nose. 
The man put his toe in the folds of the woman’s vulva. 
The woman took the man’s penis under her armpit. 
Neither one of them wanted to be the first to admit 
something was off. So it went on— 
the man put his finger in his wife’s navel. 
The woman batted her eyelashes against the arch of her husband’s foot. 
They pinched each other’s earlobes. They bit each other’s rear ends. 
To perpetrate the lie, they ended each encounter with a deep sigh. 
Then one day while the husband was hunting, 
a man stopped by the igloo and said to the wife: 
I hear you have been having trouble.
I can show you how to make love.
He took her to bed and left before the husband came home. 
Then the wife showed her husband, 
careful to make it seem like the idea sprang 
from both. After all these years of rubbing one’s face against the other’s belly 
or stroking a male elbow behind a female knee, 
this couple had a lot of catching up to do. They couldn’t stop to eat or sleep 
and grew so skinny they died. No one found them for a long time. 
And by then, their two skeletons were fused into one.

The Allure of Forms, by Coral Bracho

translated by Mónica de la Torre

Blissful dance. Scream
of the shadows in light.
Night that pours its animal shrill
into the morning’s joy.
There it ramifies,
bursts, intertwines itself. It blossoms
on its clearest edge. It’s the allure of forms
in their steep nearness, their engulfed
proximity. Rivers become entangled with, yet do not merge,
an obscure lightning, an arborescent
flame. Fauna
sliding between the blazes.
It’s the pleasure of opposites: the scattered pondering,
the swarming and resonant jungle.