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  • Writer's pictureMarías at Sampaguitas

Poetry by Noreen Ocampo

I meet happiness in the garden


& her handshake is an embrace.

The second mystery is that she smiles

the vowels of my name

the way I wish everyone would.

She invites me to stand in the sun with her.

I trust her spine & squint.

She tells me

a fence is something waiting for a tree

to fall through & we look

at the row of yellow wood. I imagine

heaven crackling & losing my spine for her.

Without it, I can’t say

that in the summer, my family grows

green beans long enough to tie things

together. I can’t ask

what season she plans to be back.




Noreen Ocampo (she/her) is a Filipina American writer and poet based in metro-Atlanta. She studies English, film, and media at Emory University and currently writes for COUNTERCLOCK and {m}aganda magazine. She is also a regular contributor for Marías at Sampaguitas. Say hi on Twitter @maybenoreen!

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