What the system has over you

This is an excerpt from a talk I gave at UCR on “what is a revolutionary?”:

“Forget about yourselves…it’s not about you…not about your education…not about your money…not about your wages…not about how hard it is to go to college. At the end of your lifetime, nothing that you have done, accumulated, published, is going to count; only what’s in your spirit. If at all.

It’s not about you. Change that orientation. The ‘me first’ attitude is the shackles that the system has over you. The fear of losing your lifestyle is what the system has over you.

If you have nothing to lose, what can you do? If you owe nothing to church or government, if you have no money to lose, if you don’t care about what car you drive, what kind of freedom can you have?

There has to be a deep surrender to your destiny, a deep knowledge of your personal freedom and an undying love for others. Without this, there is no real revolution. It’s just demagoguery and cheap talk…like this one.”

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Soy de un charco de mierda (translated from an English article published before)

No soy americano.

Nací en el continente llamado “América,” si. Pero de alguna manera estos Estados Unidos se han atribuido el nombre del continente entero.

Ronald Reagan rebajó la categoría del resto de este magnífico continente meramente a la de ser “el patio trasero de América.”

Entonces fue cuando yo llegué aquí, a la supuesta “tierra de los libres,” cuando Ronald Reagan envió miles de millones de dólares a dictaduras militares para que usara ese dinero para violar, torturar, y masacrar a mi gente. Yo no quería venir aquí. Ay! Cuánto aborrecí este país tan repleto de restricciones, prohibiciones, y gente mantenida ignorante de su propia historia!

Ya aquí, casi ninguna de las personas que llegaba a conocer sabían donde estaba mi país. Todos parecían asumir que yo era mexicano. A excepción de los mexicanos. Ellos si sabían de donde yo era, y sabían que no podrían sentirse seguros conmigo puesto que, siendo de donde yo era, to tenía que ser un borracho, un violador, un criminal, un ladrón, y un ser humano repugnante. Pocos otros sabían de donde yo era.

Después que Reagan había ya pagado por el asesinato y tortura de 100,000 de mis compatriotas, yo pudo sentar cabeza en este baluarte de la democracia—donde yo tenía que probar a cada momento que tenía el derecho de vivir aquí, que tenía el derecho de trabajar, y pues que también alguien como yo podía tener una educación.

Donald Trump le puso la etiqueta de violadores y criminales a los mexicanos, justo en el momento que anunciara su candidatura; como para enviar la señal a su base que él iba a hacer este país grande otra vez deshaciéndose de toda la mierda humana que está hoy apestando el lugar con su español y su piel oscura y su anhelo de libertad.

No obstante, ese acto no remueve la etiqueta de mí. Después de todo, si él me llegara a conocer algún día, él pensaría que yo soy mexicano.

La verdad es que es difícil para mí decir qué es lo que soy. Nací en El Salvador, y mi tierra y mi gente son sinónimos de amor y libertad en mi corazón. Pero el país mismo es una invención de un invasor proveniente de otro continente. Su lenguaje, su religión, y sus tradiciones fueron impuestas por los invasores, nos las quemaron en el cuerpo con fuego y hogueras. Nuestra resistencia de 500 años ha dejado su marca perenne en un TEPT (trastorno por estrés postraumático) tan arraigado en nuestros huesos que no sabemos si otra forma de sentir sea posible.

Soy salvadoreño, aún si el término haya sido impuesto por España. Soy americano, aún si los Estados Unidos piensan que son dueños del nombre. Soy guanaco, aún si usted piensa que es un insulto.

No soy mexicano. Muchos mexicanos aquí me llaman “cerote”—un pedazo de mierda.

Hoy, Trump estuvo de acuerdo con ellos. Hoy, él dijo que no entendía por qué los izquierdistas insistían en traer gente de esos países charcos de mierda.

Soy un pedazo de mierda de un país charco de mierda en el patio trasero de Ronald Reagan.

Y, de todos modos, estoy aquí. Y vengo de la Tierra de la Joya, del Cuzcatlán, del último bastión de la resistencia.

Estoy aquí y aquí me quedo para transformar esta tierra, este continente entero, a lo que en realidad es: la madre tierra en proceso de despertar.

Tal vez sea para usted un pedazo de mierda de un país charco de mierda, pero yo en usted y en mi y en todos veo la verdadera luz plateada de la mente vacía, la liberación del pasado, la gloria del Nuevo Sol que anuncia la venida del ser humano verdadero. Estoy aquí para compartir ese futuro con usted, querido lector, sin odio en mi corazón, sin resentimiento, y sin ninguna etiqueta que devolverle.

I come from a “shit-hole”

I am not an American.

I was born in the continent known as “America”, yes. But somehow this United States has given itself the name of the entire continent.

Ronald Reagan demoted the rest of this magnificent continent to the mere “Backyard of America.”

That’s when I came here, to the “land of the free,” when Ronald Reagan sent billions of dollars to military dictators so they could use the money to rape, torture, and massacre my people. I didn’t want to come here. Oh, how I hated coming to this land so full of restrictions, prohibitions, and people kept so ignorant of their own history!

Once I came here, almost no one I met knew where my country was. They all assumed I was Mexican. Except for Mexicans. They knew where I was from, and knew they couldn’t trust me because if was from where I was, I had to be a drunk, a rapist, a criminal, a thief, and a repulsive human being. Few others ever knew where I was from.

After Reagan was done paying for the killings and tortures of 100,000 of my people, I was able to settle in this bastion of democracy–where I had to prove at every turn that I had the right be here, that I had the right to work, and that someone like me, too, could be educated.

Donald Trump gave the label of rapists and criminals to Mexicans, right when he announces his candidacy; so as to signal to his people that he will make this country great again by getting rid of all the human shit that is now stinking up the place with their Spanish and their colored skin and their desire for freedom.

However, that doesn’t remove the labels from me. After all, if he ever met me he would think I am Mexican.

The truth is that it is hard for me to say what I am. I was born in El Salvador, and its land and people are synonyms with love and freedom in my heart. But the country itself is an invention of an invader from another continent. Its language, its religion, its traditions all were imposed by the invaders, burned into us with fire and cauldrons. Our 500 year old resistance has left its mark in a perennial PTSD so ingrained in our bones that we don’t even know any other way of feeling is possible.

I am Salvadoran, even if the term was imposed by Spain. I am American, even if the US thinks they own the name. I am güanaco, even if you think it’s an insult.

I am not Mexican. Mexicans call me “cerote”–a piece of turd.

Today, Trump agreed with them. Today, he said he didn’t understand why liberals want to bring people from those shit-hole countries.

I am a piece of turd from a shit-hole country in the backyard of Ronald Reagan.

Yet, I am here. And I come from the Land of the Jewel, Cuzcatlan, the last bastion of resistance.

I am here to stay, and to change this land, this entire continent, into what it truly is: the mother land in the process of awakening.

You may see in me a turd from a shit-hole country, but I see in you and me and all the true silver light of the empty mind, the freedom from the past, the glory of the New Sun that heralds the coming of the True Human Being. I am here to share that future with you, my reader, without hatred in my heart, without resentment, and without any names to hurl back at you.

TPS rescinded for 200,000 Salvadorans

“Los tristes más tristes del mundo…” — Roque Dalton

Today I rage.

I cry.

I speak to no one.

Today I raise my voice,

loud against the roaring ocean of time.

Today I remember that nothing changes.

Today I’ll wonder all day

What am I doing in this remote land

so proud of her false history

and so used to her frozen heart.

———————————

(200,000 law abiding Salvadorans will be deported after legally being allowed to work and live in this country.

190,000 US born citizens are the children of these TPS recipients soon to be deported. Are these children going to be separated from their families when the parents are deported, or will they be uprooted from the only country they’ve known, sent to a society where they don’t know the language and face poverty and crime? This is a conundrum each family has to face.

Keep in mind, these are no criminal gang members. They have been living and paying taxes in this country for up to 20 years. Their children are US citizens.

Today, once again, I am ashamed of the government we have chosen to represent us. I am ashamed of holding citizenship in this country led by a xenophobic, racist, homophobic, and hope crushing government. Shame on you, Donald Trump, and shame to all the money hungry predators and other spineless sycophants that surround you).

The city awakens

I talked to doves coming down to nest from the dormant volcano of my youth. Sometimes, I walked up the volcano and sit at the summit to watch the city before sunrise. Silence reigns at this time, yet the noises of the creatures of the jungle were there accentuating the silence: some crickets, a few barking dogs, and sometimes noises that I cannot describe. With the Sun came the calls of the proud roosters, the humming of the factories, and the cars going to work. Someone screams in the distance, and someone laughs farther away. A few isolated movements appeared. Then, the sounds began to copulate and mount one another. Suddenly, the cacophony of sound and movement begin to become two, three pitches, two sounds, until only one sound remained. The sound resultant was the humming of the beginning of creation, and with eyes closed then I became one with the humming of a city that was awakening.

Those little worlds floating around.

I find myself at the age of six, walking down a corridor in my grandmother’s house. I wake up before the sun rises and I stare at the ceiling. I watch the light of the morning dawn filter through the rooftop. I witness millions of tiny little worlds floating around, dancing with the sounds of birds and barking dogs, as crickets were just finishing their song and their life. I breathe in the air and though I do not see it, I know that these tiny little dots I see through the Sun beam rush to get into me, and I wonder how many worlds come into me and what happens to them. Do they die? Do they collide? Do they become? Do they not notice it? Do they become me? And if they become me, do they then wonder what happens to all of those little worlds floating around, riding the currents of the solar tides?

Why is a Salvadoran writing Haiku?

It is El Salvador the place where I learned my first and most enduring lessons, where life first met me and revealed shadows and mysteries, joys and miseries. It was in the jungle and the volcano, not in the snowy peak of gentle Japanese mountains, that nature surrounded me with the song of birds, the scorching heat of the sun, the clear dark of starry nights. It was here that the unknown rained from vast darkness unto the panic beauty of nights without electricity an the perennial presence of the Duende, the voyeuristic games of the Cipitio, and the dreadful curse of the Cihuanaba. In its cities I smelled blood, touched death, and tasted static mystery. It wasn’t the profound calm of zen but the torrid emotions of the human and tropical jungle that forged my joy for life, my avid desire for experience, and my sense of self.

More than anything, it is here in the war and the full beauty of that valley of hammocks that I came first to sense the seed of self that exists before I was born and that shall endure well after this body and that country are long dissolved and forgot. That place is then my origin and therefore my end (as an Aristotelean telos, not as a tomb). In stories as in mathematics, the end is contained in the beginning. The egg contains the potentiality of the being, and in the being is the solution to the puzzle of evolution.

Check out Adumbrations

El Brujo

The magical traditions of the peoples of Latin America are deeply embedded in the natural worlds that surround them. Their inner power is the mastery of perception, and out of that mastery their magic flows as the jungle flows.

The Brujo’s sorcery burns like the tropical sun. It towers and shakes the earth in volcanic joys. It hums eternally with the song of big seas in small shells. It lives and sweats among the mass of peoples, living and dying in eternal struggles for freedom.

The Brujo’s Sorcery is the magical song of the ally. It hardens its intent in the intense heat of the dessert. It dances with the eternal thirst of millions of trees, gifting the world with life to breathe.

 

www.KoyotetheBlind.com

 

Gentle is the breath of death

The little twelve-year-old boy is kneeling, looking at his future: that calm, restful corpse who used to be his playmate. Who used to laugh like a train whistles. Who used to play pranks. Who used to sing and dance. Who used to like to climb trees and fall.

Now, he emits no heat, no laughter, no sound, no play.

Yet, he emits something: an extremely subtle, light, almost cold, touch. It’s almost like the spray of mist an orange emits when cut by the knife. It’s the sensation of that spray on the face, touching as a caress that almost did not happen. This breath, emanating from the body of the corpse is so subtle that it’s almost imperceptible to the senses.

Yet, perceived it is. With the impression of this emanation, the last breath of that corpse touching the heart of this little twelve year old boy about to be executed.