Dust blows down empty streets in Manuel Antonio;
By the road a discarded bag of crisps lies, crinkling in the breeze.
The tourists, on their way to more exotic places than this,
scarcely glance from side to side as they pass broken houses
and stores with chipped and peeling letters on their signs:
Café Negro — 3 US Dollars.
At the end of the street the buses depart from the town
to climb the mountain road which will take a few to the coast
where they’ll sell their cheap jewelry for what they can.
The bus driver grunts as he deposits his fare in a tin by the wheel
before closing the door and setting off as he has done every day
since the jungle was pulled aside and the road was laid down
on this earth to which it clings; on the surface of this tiny country,
to reach this town at the end of the ocean.