IMAGE: Kerith Lisi

Advice for Bilingual Poets

Emmanuel Solorzano

Emmanuel Solorzano was born in Managua, Nicaragua and immigrated to the U.S. in 2000. He studied literature at San José State University and teaches English in the Bay Area, his home base for observing the world, writing poems, and seeking closeness with God by practicing the teachings of Jesus.

Credence is lent, that’s why 

we say “lend credence.” 


The inverted Spanish question mark
is no more a quirk than the Petrine cross. 


Was it Jefferson that invented bifocals? 

(I’ll bet you a hundred dollars it was.) 


In poetry, lines break.
A professor told me they end 


but if I learned anything in high school geometry, 

a true line never ends. 


Last thing: there is nothing
like the calm outside your window right now. 


I dare you: replicate it, translate it—
don’t just imitate it. The pale sky resembles blank paper. 


Trace your line across it, 

make it never-ending.