The Valentine Peace Project
The Witness Remains
Makes Me Happy?
Subimos para pasar el precipicio entre la risa y las lagrimas
We climb to pass the precipice between laughter and tears
Peace is freedom from the
pain. Victory over the
deep hurts. Love that
will flow to others.
Able to be the real me
in my own country.
Corazón del Cielo
Del corazón del cielo
from the heart of the sky
hablan al corazón
talk form the heart
canción del cielo
deep inside the sky
inspiration and feeling
el fondo del cielo
TEYOLIA CENOTE DOUBLED HEART
the Seat of the Soul
Allí donde se asienta Todo.
In my boyhood all the men
wore them, a light body shirt
with pleats running down the breast,
two top pockets for pens, notepads,
two bottom ones for keys or loose change,
each sewn with a button
in the middle of the pouch,
a complement tailored to the slit
at the side of the hip. If you look
at photographs in family albums,
men stand against palm trees,
their short-sleeved guayaberas
caught in sunlight, their Panama hats
tipped to the sky. There’s a black and white
of my father, stumbling along fields
of cane, head full of rum,
mouth in an o, probably
singing a bolero of Old San Juan.
On days like these, the sun burned
like an onion in oil. Women hung
guayaberas on windows to dry.
Shirtless, men picked up their barefoot babies
off the floor, held them against their bellies
as if talking to a god. Even my school uniform
was a blue guayabera, but nothing
like my father’s favorite: white,
long-sleeved, above the left breast
a tiny pocket, perfectly slender for a cigar,
arabesque designs vertically stretched.
When the evening breeze lulled
from tree to tree, he serenaded
my mother, guitars and tongues of rum
below her balcony; the trio strumming,
plucking till one in the morning.
I don’t know what came first,
war or years of exile,
but everyone — shakers of maracas, cutters
of cane, rollers of tobacco — stopped wearing them,
hung them back in the closet, waiting
for their children to grow,
an arc of parrots to fly across the sky
at five in the evening. In another country,
fathers in their silver hair sit
on their porches, their sons, now men,
hold babies in the air, guayaberas nicely pressed.
Don’t think for a blue minute
Peace is no quaint scene,
Peace is constant motion,
Peace is not the people
Peace is the courage
Peace is not the people around you suddenly
That Buddha is not napping
Wake up to the people around you, he calls.
When you hear him,