Franco Bastida

If I had an apricot

for every time my father told me,

“Look both ways before crossing the street”

there would be plenty at my feet

but they would be dry.


Because apricots are sweet

and meant to be shared

and each seed carries

a pinch of nostalgia.


Some are ripe

like the slurp of the first sorbet

in a hot summer day

or the aftertaste of a salty, watery

kiss after an ocean plunge.


Some are not

like the lemon pie gone sour

before everybody’s eyes

or the bite of dust

when a car ran me over by the park.


It had been but a scratch

but man, was he angry,

“En la cabeza, ¡no!”


You see,

the head is so fragile

it peels off if you get it real bad

it can change your life

just like that.


Franco Bastida (Torreón, 1993) is a Mexican journalist, musician and global policy expert based in Berlin. He is a Latin American Studies graduate from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Plattsburgh and has written work in the fields of security, education, politics and technology, among others. In 2023, he published his first poetry book, NOISE: Poems of water and sand, after experimenting with zines in Pitzilein Books’ workshop in Mexico City.