The Ofi Press Magazine

International Poetry and Literature from Mexico City

Andre Bagoo: 3 Poems Published

Poems by Andre Bagoo (Trinidad)

Published in The Ofi Press issue 42

Poems from BURN (Shearsman Books, 2015)






How could a man fit in such a space?

Bellowed legs, lungs, cellophane wings

Scratching paint off plaster, flight of loneliness.

How could a man take so long

To know? What did not fit, how could he?

See. The man – the mirror, the shell

The imaginary me, climbing into

A canvass that could not be.

Maybe when we die, the space we occupy contracts,

Maybe the universe gets smaller.










Present Tense


I looked into sea mirrors

and saw you.

No poem came.

Look long enough and you will see


a flame on a gas stove –

the wrong face flowering.








The Spiral Staircase


My dad built a spiral staircase.

He made it of steel.

He took a pole from an old fire station.

The firemen would use it to slide

into danger.

He welded steps to it.

He made rails using grills from gas stoves.

They look like the twigs of birds nests.

They make the shape of weird spines.


The staircase is the only thing that connects us now,

my father upstairs in his room praying.

As he sits among white mosquito nets and bibles,

I punch the punching bag. I work out

what I cannot work out.


I walk up the stairs,

on steps he singed for me,

to say, for the day, goodbye.


About the Poet

Andre Bagoo is a poet and journalist working in Trinidad. His second book of poems, BURN, is published by Shearsman Books. Find out more here: 

Images: "Smoke and Mirrors" by Moyann Brenn, "Blank Canvas" by Evelyn Flint and "Euston Tap" by Dan Brown.