poetry By Sandra Cisneros Creed In Lieu of Liquor I Write Poems I believe I am God. And you are too. And each and everyone. But only for a little. In lieu of liquor. Poems. I believe God is Love and love is God. And although some Doubt God’s existence, No one doubts the existence of love, Even and especially those who have Never met love. I believe we are Capable of atrocities beyond Imagination and equally Capable of extraordinary God-acts as well. I believe There is enough misery In the world, but also Humanity — just a bit More, I believe. I believe in the power Of a thought, a word, To change the world. I believe there is no greater Sorrow than that of a mother Who has lost her child. I believe in las madres, Las madres de las madres, Y la santísima madre, La diosa Guadalupe. Instead of words like shrapnel. Chant. Rose petals in a clear bowl. Sleep. Instead of waiting for the phone to ring, Sing. Bring to the bath fresh flowers. Soak. Wash face with water Instead of grief. Paint lips. Shoes. Juice. Sushi. Kohl. Silk. Book. Choose. Alone, not lonely. Home, not homely. Bliss. Homily. In lieu of Chernobyl, This. I believe what the generals need now Are the abuelita brigades armed with Chanclas to shame, swat, and spank Los meros machos del mundo. Amen. I believe mothers and grandmothers Are the solution to violence, Not only in Mexico/the United States, But across the globe. Because the universe is large enough To encompass contradictions, I believe these same mothers sometimes Create monsters — los machos.