Dreaming of Paradise

Watching Mother Cry on Valentine’s Day

She knew before the rest of us.
She had fallen to her knees again
Her legs too weak to hold her up again
As the sobs wracked her body once again.

The family,
Unsure of what to do as they usually are
Brought her favorite blanket,
The one decorated with stars and stripes,
And draped it over her shoulders.
Never mind that it wouldn’t comfort her
Never mind that it has never comforted her
Not in times like that.
Never mind all that –
It makes the family feel better
About ourselves.

Meanwhile mother wept.
She sang a mourning song
Through the tears.
Not that anyone heard.
I’m not even sure I heard.
We all had our own needs
Our own amusements to pursue.

When we wouldn’t listen,
She cried out to the God of her youth
“How long?
How many more children
How many more of my children
Must die?
Why must my children die?!
Why are my children dying?”

Outside the house the rest of the family
Was talking to reporters.
They talked about praying
About change
About mental health challenges
But it was all just talk.
It’s always just talk.

They talk,
Mother weeps
And children die.


Song 137 – of blood in the streets

There will be blood in the streets

The preacher comes down to the barrio
And starts talking to the kids hanging at
My mama’s bodega
Listening to tunes on an old stereo

“Hey Cholos” the white man says
“Que onda?” like he knows what it means
Maybe he does.
But to me he looks like just another white guy.

“What you listening to?” he asks.
“That doesn’t sound like Alejandro Sanz”
Well no shit Sherlock. These are kids
They wouldn’t know Sanz if he
Autographed the side of a building.

There will be blood in the streets

But now I notice the other white guy
The one wearing the red baseball cap
The one looking around like someone’s gonna
Mug the preacher
Looking around like a pandejo bodyguard.

The rhymes from Residente rolling off
The stereo seem to freak Pandejo out.
He gets this look.
THE look.
Shit’s going south and the fucking preacher man
Habla sin habla
“How’s school going?”
“You catch any Champions League?”

There will be blood in the streets

Aunque el Pandejo se mueve su chaqueta
Y todo el barrio se puede ver
¿Pandejo blanco?
Pandejo packing pues.

Thank you Jesus for whites only
Open carry.

I’m so angry I can barely see.
I’m so scared I can barely think.

Los Malatruchas see it all too
And they looking for a fight.
They’d love a good fight.

They start making their way over.
Pandejo notices
And I don’t know who to protect
Or how.

All I can think
All I can wonder
“vengeance is mine” says the lord,
But who here is his avenging angel?

And there will be blood in the streets


This is part of the Bible Poetry project.  You can click here to see the synopsis of the project.

Song 13 Reflection

This is part of the Bible Poetry project.  You can click here to see the synopsis of the project.

My first psalm of lament was 13.  I find this particular lament easier to read because it does not dwell on any kind of revenge or retribution to be visited against the wicked, or those who would seem to be the source of the singer’s trouble.   That is one aspect that I struggle with in certain psalms of lament (*cough 137 cough*). Continue reading “Song 13 Reflection”

Song 13

This is part of the Bible Poetry project.  You can click here to see the synopsis of the project.

I’ve waited so long in the deafening darkness
in the lonely abyss of the blinding silence.
I’ve waited so long without company
or surety you hear me or see me
the only things near me are




and devastation

My depression leaves an impression
Where it holds me as it rocks my soul to sleep.
My heart is dry my blood is seeping
From my eyes like tears because I can’t weep
anymore. I wonder if death’s sting would be
more like a caress
a promise of rest
and end to this endless
suffering and torment.
I trusted you.
I’ve hoped in you.
I’ve fought and bled for you
And bled
And bled and bled for you.
And I can’t believe
after all I’ve seen
that You’d abandon me
to your enemies.
But I’ve nothing left except to sleep
to dream
to die
and I

I guess I’m just waiting
for you in the meantime.

Song 8 reflection

This is part of the Bible Poetry project.  You can click here to see the synopsis of the project.

I begin psalms of praise with Psalm 8.  In general I think of praise as being upbeat and joyful.  It is the kind of music you play at weddings, and bachelor parties and that you might see on the club scene in general.

My musical inspirations for approaching the psalms of praise were what I considered club music.  These included Prince’s 1999, The Black Eyed Pea’s I Gotta Feeling, and Pitbull’s Timber.  The desire is to present the pslam in a scenario in which the listener’s natural reaction is to dance. Continue reading “Song 8 reflection”

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