Sunday, May 09, 2010

San Andres Xecul and the Vegetarian Cafe

I discovered El Infinito today on 7th Avenue, a vegetarian cafe, and it smelled of the most flavorful roasted coffee beans on the planet. Thoughts of my friend, Charlsie, darted in and out of my mind because there were brightly colored Mayan gods painted on the walls, and I wondered what she was painting at this very moment.

The trip to San Andres Xecul earlier today left me wondering about religions worldwide. Why is it so important for people to have a saint to worship, in this case Simon, who is responsible for health, love lives, the drinking tab at the bar, smoking and peace. The couple honoring Saint Simon in his shrine spent 120 quetzals on a tailsman to send to relatives in Washington, D.C. That is a large amount of money for a middle aged rural couple in Guatemala.

Riding in the back of a pickup truck to get back to the main road was life affirming on such a sunny Sunday. Mayan religions mix Christianity with their own forms of worship. Seeing the effigy of Saint Simon dressed in a Texas cowboy hat, cowboy boots, sunglasses, and sporting thick black sideburns was not comforting to me. Knowing that many people in the town believe that he sleeps on the slender twin bed night after night was like a ghost story in reality.

Seeing a lighted cigar in his mouth, a bottle of liquor near his feet, and candles on the alter may not be the best portrayal of a responsible role model for Guatemalan kids, but Dionysus added some spunk and spice to ancient Greek life, so who am I to question.

Shine your light on me Saint Simon and send good health, the amor of my life, love, and peace to all.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

March 12. 1922

Happy Birthday Jack Kerouac!

But then they danced down the streets like dingledodies, and I shambled after as I´ve been doing all my life after people who interest me, because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue center light pop and everybody goes Awww!

I know I am American when...


I know I am American when...

I complain about walking everywhere and miss my car when I see a blue Mazda similar to mine rolling through the street;

The pollution in the streets makes my eyes water and my throat burn;

Skype doesn´t work on the computer, and I can´t hear the person on the other end of the line, so my frustration level increases dramatically;

I go to bed, and it sounds as if the cars are driving over me honking their horns. I can´t fall asleep;

My fingernails are dirty, and it bothers me;

I flinch each time I hear a fireworks explosion for a birthday or a celebration;

and the men with big guns guarding expensive shops catch my attention each time I see them.


Monday, May 03, 2010

The Deluge of Language

Lu Chi (261 - 303)

In a single yard of silk, infinite space is found. Language is a deluge from one small corner of the heart.

1 de Mayo, 2010: May Day in Xela

Passing through the cementario en 20 Avenida with mi sombrilla and the splash of drops soaking through mis zapatos, I notice the decapitated marble goddess watching over the long-gone La Familla Paz encased in 6-foot long rectangular concrete. A lone woman in black stands under su sombrilla at the end of the path remembering a husband, brother, nino who died too early

sleeping in the concrete
standing in the rain

I wander through the Mercado Flores into a cafe where I drink cafe con leche for 5 quetzals and stumble across a poem in an anthology of world poetry.

The Postclassical World A.D. 250-1200

Meng Hao-jan
Written for old friends in Yang-Jou City while spending the night on the Tung-Lu River

I hear the apes howl sadly
In dark mountains.
The blue river
flows swiftly through the night.

The wind cries
In the leaves on either side of the bank.
The moon shines
On a solitary boat.

These wild hills
Are not my country.
I think of past ramblings
In the city with you.

I will take
These two lines of tears,
And send them to you.
Far away
At the western reach of the sea.

The lesson I learned walking beside the dead in the rain on May Day:

Juan Chi (210 - 263)

That is why the wise man drifts along the river of time.
What is passing cannot remain.
Such are the thorns and thistles of this world.

World Poetry: An Anthology of Verse from Antiquity to Our Time

About Me

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What do I do? That’s a question with more depth than the deceiving three-word construction would lead us to believe.

I live on planet earth with other folks, and I’m involved in the field of education and learning. I’m a life-long learner with a passion for knowledge and the process of bending bits of ideas into new constructions of beauty.