I met María on the Megabus, sitting there across from me, she said “no hablo ingles”
So all the way to Dallas I tried thinking of
questions I knew how to ask, just to see what she would say,
“cuantos nietos tienen?” (How many grandkids do you have?)
ella tiene diez (she has 10, plus 4 great-grandchildren)
ah, so how do you say? (bisabuela) Como se dice?
She was on the way to visit family, for a week she’ll stay with them, bisnietos on her knees
I told María that I have a niece, named María también, mi sobrina , not yet 3,
“Quieren unas nueces?” I offered almonds from my bag,
María took a few, she told me almonds aren’t “nuts” in Spanish,
ah, so how do you say? (fruta seca) Como se dice?
She was born in Mexico, she spoke quietly and slow,
I guessed words I didn’t know, & looked up others on my phone,
I thought that I should show respect, so I tried to use “usted”
I’ve lost a lot of words from Spanish class, I can’t find them anymore,
ya no las encuentro mas,
but I know the word for “great-grandmother” now, bisabuela on the bus,
María no habla ingles.. how do you say? como se dice?..