The Zetas and the Ruins of Veracruz and other poems

by Matthew Dexter


The Zetas and the Ruins of Veracruz

Human heads hanging from a bridge

shake palm fronds splintered

during hurricane lightning

and further inquiry suggests

that bloggers shall be silenced

by the machetes of deaf reckoning

the corral of the tourism industry

cowers in the sculpture of neglect and rot.



Blueberry Haze


flag burning barmaids slamming shots and

men murdering marlins for sport


they smash the jewelry counter with machetes

masked men on Luxury Avenue


illiterate children sell trinkets on the streets

pregnant mothers breastfeed in cobblestoned alleys in front of Italian restaurants


fat women sell slender roses to potheads

to tourists whose children are attacked by baby tigers


to marina tortillas and tacos and broken sewer lines spewing cocaine

and soiling the sacred highways between glorious debaucheries


the sombrero fits as the tequila falls like stray moonlit bullets

vomit reflections upon puddles never lie.



High Season


They say they almost caught El Chapo in Cabo

that day when there were soldiers everywhere

machine guns on the beach

bulletproof vests

making drug deals more exotic as

trucks of armed men search for their prize

little different than a cruise ship tourist

looking for his blow and a captain being dismissed into the

depth of oblivion he did not know.



Medicine Drip


Should I buy a bottle?

Will the fifth day of hemorrhoids

make it impossible to walk the beach in order to buy weed

from venders and the three cruise ships beckon

with the splendor of the burning son

who needs love and

you cannot provide it because you are

concerned with your own illness?



Kidnap in Mexico


My sister has been missing

for more than three years,

but that doesn’t make any difference

since her pillow and sheets still smell of strawberry

shampoo and Mom still keeps everything




left it.



Matthew Dexter lives in Cabo San  Lucas, Mexico. Like nomadic Pericú, he survives on a hunter-gatherer subsistence diet of shrimp tacos, smoked marlin, and cold beer. His work has been published in dozens of anthologies, hundreds of literary journals; and he has written thousands of freelance articles for magazines and newspapers, including dozens of feature articles for international magazines. Matthew has written pieces for National Geographic Traveler and Canoe & Kayak, among others. Two of his stories were chosen as storySouth Million Writers Award Notable Stories of 2010, and one piece was selected as a Notable Story of 2009. Matthew won the Writers’ Bloc paying fiction contest about sacrifice in 2010 for his short story, Jackson Pollock Moment.

Art by Judith Shaw