David Reyes

David R bio pic


David Antonio Reyes, born and raised in El Paso, TX, received a double BA in Creative Writing and Multimedia Journalism from the University of Texas at El Paso and recently completed his MFA in poetry at New Mexico State University. His work has appeared in Rio Grande ReviewBorderzine, Chrysalis, and Puerto Del Sol. He teaches Rhetoric and Composition at New Mexico State University and English at El Paso Community College. You can connect with Reyes at davidantonioreyes87@gmail.com.

Sábado Gigante

We visit my uncle Saturday evening. Night falls over downtown horizons. A blinking eye descends to city lights. They said he wouldn’t live past three weeks, but it’s been more than three months. I crank up the puppets' metallic Orion driving there.

Sun sends a look when it brightens. We have forever to watch this shit.

The television radiates performances that sink down to the bone. Six contestants are given the opportunity to sing songs. Good performers can get $1,000. Don Francisco always wants to take part in the act, wears ridiculous hats and wigs, trying to distract the contestant while he or she sings. Bad performers are cut off by El Chacal blowing a rusty trumpet to signal their elimination. Fuera! Fuera! 

Terrible performers are fed to a lion.

In between the segments, Don Francisco’s models advertise Snickers bars. Don Francisco, along with the audience, sings jingles, describing one of many products:

Allstate, American Airlines, AutoZone,

Cap'n Crunch, Coca-Cola, Dog Chow

Colgate, Chex, Almond Joy, Pampers,

Ferrero Rocher, Mazola, Big Hunk, Starburst,

Miller, Oreos, Chips Ahoy!, Polaroid,

Quaker, Aunt Jemima, Sprint, Domino’s.

My uncle wants another cookie, cannot get up to get it--determined to do it alone, but it's not possible. If only we could pull the lines off him, let him walk the streets like he loved to in search of aluminum cans for change. He sits back down. We bring the cookies to him.

"Mueve la colita" Don Francisco sings along with the crowd, lyrics transformed into an anthem for objectification. It is one of his many beauty pageants. You hate it. You love it. It's tradition. Stage names get them through the three hours. Six women compete in negligee, revealing skin. Don Francisco glares like the TV.

Uncle stares at the women smiling, moving his eyebrows playfully.

Do you know what it's like to get false hope?

In the next segment someone’s accused of infidelity and put through a lie detector test while another woman claims to have had an extraterrestrial encounter. The polygraphist mispronounces words in Spanish. He is made fun of by Don Francisco, the all-knowing host.

We pour Odoul’s into Bud Light cans and tell my uncle he can have one or two.

Don Francisco jocks models on TV.
The women in the room swear at the man every time.Tio, you have to eat this cancer.

© The Acentos Review 2016