César De León

Cesar De Leon photo 2


César Leonardo De León is a resident of McAllen, Texas. His poetry has been published in the anthologies Along the River 2: More Voices From the Rio Grande, and Juventud!: Growing up on the Border among other anthologies and journals. In 2012, César received a Golden Circle Award from The University of Columbia Press for his poem “Us”, and in 2014 he was awarded 2nd place in poetry from the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association. He is currently working on his MFA in Creative Writing with a Certificate in Mexican American Studies at The University of Texas-Pan American. 

The First Cold Front in El Valle


 The first cold front in El Valle is

shopping at the meatmarket to make

caldo de res for dinner,

even though the temperature will only drop

into the 70's that night.


You have to find the right cut of carne

with thick white marrow

still in the bone; the butcher knows the kind.


From the small produce section

you pick calabazita tierrna ,carrots,

small juicy valley limes, and cabbage

that will turn translucent as the fatty broth boils

sending waves of cumin-fragrant

steam to cling on the windows.


If we are lucky, the northern will arrive with rain

driven sideways by a stiff wind

that will ruffle palm fronds

that never turn red, orange, or yellow.

That never fall in the short blue-gray days of winter

like the leaves on the trees

in the calendar of the kitchen wall.

©The Acentos Review 2015