Skip to content
Words Without Borders is one of the inaugural Whiting Literary Magazine Prize winners!
from the January 2017 issue

Plamondon Metro

Alejandro Saravia charts the life and death of a rookie dealer on the mean streets of Montreal

on a corner on avenue Decelles
a Caribbean man finds an abandoned mattress
where he can sleep
and dream that he speaks French and English
that he wears the best brands
that he owns 24-karat gold bracelets
that he has women to spare
and drives a brand-new Mercedes

drawn by the myth of the streets of gold
Santiago Nasar arrives on rue Barclay and becomes a pusher
in his pocket the niveous ecstasy that leads to knives
to anonymous overdose deaths in this part of Montreal

guided through the snow by the hunger for hundred-dollar bills
the clandestine sale of tiny bags of Disney World cocaine
his pocket full of bills and a knife sheath on his belt
he shoots a stealth look at pedestrians on rue Goyer
as he walks to the Plamondon metro dreaming of being a distributor
what the hell! why not an importer even, a big one

a quiet neighbor watches from his window
as Santiago falls, his throat split
the slash that spills on the snow
the crimson of his short life
a light vapor of blood on the snow
his pockets empty, someone steals his shoes
a body goes unclaimed
near the Plamondon metro

 

"Metro Plamondon" © Alejandro Saravia. By arrangement with the author. Translation © 2017 María José Gimenez. All rights reserved.

Read more from the January 2017 issue
Like what you read? Help WWB bring you the best new writing from around the world.