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Archive for August, 2011

I have just finished reading my father’s lovely tribute to his mother.  It evoked a great deal of emotion, and memories of loss.  We have all been there – done that – sort of say – some on a deeper level than others – but from loss often comes gain – a deeper understanding of the real value of life – of what really matters…..My own experience with deep loss led to my writing poetry seriously again – for this I am grateful, and put me on my spiritual path – helped me to help others and finally realize that so many of the things we think are so important, so necessary, so whatever – really aren’t – death of a loved one puts everything into perspective – quickly!

 

So, thank you dad, for once again sharing with us these emotions which we all can learn from. 

Sat Nam and Peace to all,

Pilar/Vani

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“Madre, déjame elegir tu muerte…”
ARTURO CUADRADO

Margarita, nombre albo y floral,
conjugación de pétalos y savias:
atardecía: se oscureció tu alcoba,
iluminada tenuemente por la
luciérnaga azul de un reverbero,
tu voz se hilvanó en quejidos
del fondo de un cuerpo ya vencido
y entre las  sabanas febriles, derretido,
yacía el hielo paliativo que yo,
con premura y esperanza infantiles,
había portado a tu lecho a mediodía.
Papá, ágil como en sus lides juveniles,
descolgó y te mostró sendos retratos.
“Míralos. Son tus hijos,” musitó turbado.
Mis hermanos mayores allende los mares,
al final de un cruel y breve cablegrama…

Abrieron de par en par la puerta de la casa
(quizás para dar a la muerte una salida franca)
y las sirvientas iniciaron la ronda de rosarios…
El zaguán olía a éter,  yodo,  alcohol alcanforado,
y luego a la fragancia colectiva
de las coronas funerarias que llegaban.
En los pasillos, ecos sosegado de saludos
de médicos que salían y deudos que entraban.

Mamá Margarita:

Modelo de ternura,
compasión. paciencia,
abnegación. nobleza,
paz y silencio.
del silencio sedante
que todo ser humano
necesita para renovar
su energía con el cosmos
y sobrevivir, amar y crear
en este maltrecho planeta.
Tal es legado que nos dejas,
madre, junto con tu evocación
a través de las hermosas flores
que comparten tu nombre.

Mamá Margarita: inicias tu viaje
hacia lo desconocido,
que es apenas un hilo de luz
que no podemos ver
aunque en él se fusionen
el tiempo y el espacio.
total misterio
para quienes estamos
aquí de paso
rumbo a otras dimensiones.
Tú ya asciendes hacia
otras mansiones siderales
a fin de concebir nuevas raíces
en la órbita del tiempo detenido
para acoger tu alma terrestre
el 22 de agosto del año 1929,
seis de la tarde. .

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“Mother, let me choose your death…”
ARTURO CUADRADO

Margarita, your name,
white and ethereal,
evokes petals and leafs,
vegetal perfumes.
It was sunset,
and your sick room at home
mantled by shadows,
lit by bluish reflections
from a lone alcohol burner;
your usually placid voice
turned to sighs and whispers
from deep in an eroding body;
among your fevered sheets,
laid molten the ice pack I ran
to fetch you that day at noon
in my child’s hope it would
perform a miracle;
with the nimbleness
of a former athlete,
father rushed to you two portraits:
“Look at them. They are your sons,”
he stuttered, holding back tears:
my two older brothers absent overseas,
at the end of a cruel cable message…

The main entrance to the house
was left wide open,
as if to give death an ample way to exit,
and the servants started praying
an endless round of rosaries.

In the hallway, languished
the stench of  camphor, ether, iodine,
replaced soon by tart fragrances
from arriving funereal wreaths;
along corridors,
muted echoes of greetings
between departing doctors
and entering mourners.

Mamá Margarita:
embodiment of tenderness,
compassion, patience,
self-denial, integrity,
peace and silence,
the sedating silence
some human beings
seek to survive,
to create and to love
on our shattered planet.
This is the inspiring legacy
you’ve bestowed on us,
along with the beauty
of all flowers sharing
their name with yours.

Margarita my mother,
you’re now bound
for the unknown,
on a thread of light linking
space and time
in total mystery for those
of us still in transit
to new spiritual spheres.
You already soar
to higher cosmic orbits
in order to conceive
fresh roots upon time,
halted to welcome
your terrestrial soul
on August 22, 1929,
at six in the afternoon.

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Deep in Colombia’s
Amazonian jungle,
even today
the Huitoto tribe
peacefully subsists
off fishing, hunting
archaic farming,
protected by the  bush
from our so-called
“civilization”,
able to cling to age-old
traditions and rituals.

Among these,
today’s savants interpret
the Huitoto myth
of Creation:
The Father first birthed
the land, its trees, vines
and flowers,
followed by the waters
of seas, lakes and rivers,
clouds in the sky,
lofty and low,
gray, white and blue,
while in the depths
of the netherworld,
He created Rafuema,
“beholder of tales,”
and ordered him to voice
his own description
of Creation.
To describe the wonders:
all kinds of animals,
from crickets to whales,
tree-eating black monkeys,
fruit scaveging tapirs,
bush  boars, warthogs, feral piglets
birds of all chirps and colors,
clouds of gnats and cicadas
and other wild and domestic beasts.

To me as a poet,
this Huitoto myth
is both transparent and exalting,
for in the order of Creation,
after earth, sea and sky,
the Father birthed Rafuema,
“beholder of tales”,
another name for
poet,
bard,
minstrel,
troubadour.
This is why I propose
to elevate Rafuema
to the symbolic rank
of poetic deity
of Colombia,
“land of poets”.
where a giant creative
circle has expanded
over time  by those
following his path:
Chibchas singing lullabies
to full moon Mother Chia;
Muiscas humming chants
as El Dorado submerges
anointed with gold dust
into frigid Lake Guatavita;
the four winds resound
with the battle hymns
of ferocious Pijaos
and man-eating Caribs;
and cryptic mantras
are endlessly repeated
to the beat of tom-toms
and shrills of reed flutes
at Cunha fertility rites
in Darien’s somber swamps.

Pilar, my daughter
and defacto accomplice
in DuoPoetico,
feels unique telluric links
with Ancient Peru,
and from her home
in Big Sky Montana
she  writes odes
to the sun god of the Incas,
to Pachamanca,
the Quechua earth goddess,
and to the moon’s vestals
who soar over Machu Picchu.
I’m blessed with
similar solace and inspiration
irradiating from Rafuema
and other tellers of tales
who, century after century,
have followed his path
in what is now Colombia.

Daughter,
let us continue
this dialogue inspired
by the changing of the seasons,
the power of the sun,
the phases of the moon,
and all our indigenous heritage
paying homage to our ancestral
bards:
whose words still burn
in our hearts
in our veins
in our souls….

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dedicated to all those souls who guide me in my journey

The shadows follow me :
here at 7,000 ft.,
under the watch of nighthawks
and  cloaked coyotes,
under clouds
so full
they leave little
blue of sky:
these souls
hover
at my shoulder,
begging me
to decipher their
faint touch
their distant braille….

Frail in the sun’s dimming light:
I feel
their wispy tendrils,
but it is only
the clear
shrill night song
of the distant flicker
I recognize.

They are adamant –
sometimes
violent
in their need,
today
slowly
my tired body
like an anchor,
walks the short distance
to the top of the gravel drive,
and seeks the new moon
I feel their push –
driving me
relentless
up
higher
in their rush
to fill
me
like a virgin canvas
with their final tears,
their lingering
fury
desires
regrets:
acrid,
but  pure
like the wet sage
at my feet.

I turn my face
toward the valley
and spot two antelope
grazing
aloof
clear in their intent –
moving from long blade
to longer blade –
filling their bellies
and stepping
into another night,
without hesitation.

The moon denies me
solace,
so I close my eyes
and embrace
all my ghosts,
granting them
room in my heart:
The walk back to the
darkened house
is suddenly warm,
my hands scorching
as I touch
my face,
my breath
full and slow.
In the sky
the first star
of the night
burns pure,
and I
hear the
low
distant
rumble
of a storm
behind the
waves of sage.

These long lost souls
whisper
knowledge
in languages
I know
and know not,
but my soul listens.

At daybreak,
once again
the elk will migrate
strong and free
down the steep
aspen lined ravine,
their hoofs splitting
hidden logs
as they rush
toward the wild
wet morning grass:
yearlings,
cows
young bucks
glistening bright brown
in a mass of sheer
hunger
longing
desire
of life
of here
of now……
but in the distance
I hear a long
sigh,
a lullaby
a prayer
a word
I know it in my soul……

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