Monday, May 3, 2010

Helen Graziano


Campesinos all -- love the dust of Mexico
I’m a Cuernevaca, Guanajuato kid

There’s magic in the dust of Mexico
A cantina open in a rainstorm
Saying welcome bienvenidos
Mas tequila por favor--
Mariachis sing about wondrous Madrid
the Man descends into the bullring
Ole! Ole! The women rant then faint
When bull is gored
The corrida-- at 4 in the afternoon.

“Non se puede vivir sin amar”
One cannot live without love
Love in the time of Cholera, unrequited
Torrid tempestuous Don Juan
Ultima seductions--696
But when the body is unable? What then?

There’s magic in the dust of Mexico
Tramping into Santo Tomas winery
Sampling mescal and chardonnay
Hoofing to La Bufadora the water spouting
like old faithful, spuming, gushing
a towering column, between the rocks
wet spray on tourists

Pueblo blankets and horses run on the beach
Michelin tires stacked in roadside dust
La dia de los muertes, The day of the dead
The devil comes out of hiding
and the skulls dance

Where is salvation?
Beggars with turquoise rings, abalone shells for earrings
There’s Jose and Jaime and Pablo, campesinos all.
Aye Aye O rancho grande
Sangria flows from bota bags
Ole! I shout! My spirit is willing

1 comment:

  1. from Phil Turner:

    That's one way of knowing Mexico -- only the good part, the one that the impresarios have applied makeup and foundation to so that the tourists will not be shocked about the harsh but sometimes beautiful realities of the country. I have another knowledge of Mexico, not the kind that can be found on a t-shirt bought in San Felipe or Ensenada. I know about the Mayan peasants who still live on sugarcane plantations left over by the Spaniards and refuse to speak a word of Spanish to anyone nor allow their children to learn it. The fishermen of Merida still sometimes live in huts on the coast and speak to no one, working 15 hour days. The real Mexico is where no other tourists will go, off the beaten path and into the clawing hands of danger. Even Chiapas, with its cocaine plantations guarded by Zapatistas, fake freedom fighters, has much more to teach than all of the tourist hotspots that feature so much falsehood and so little authenticity. When one has seen the ugliest of a country without flinching, then one deserves to taste the best -- it is just like this between two people.