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Published On: Thu, Nov 26th, 2009

The Poetry of Bobby Gonzalez: Anacaona

(artwork by Taino Spirit)


ANACAONA

She
sits on the earthen floor.
Her wrists and ankles
fettered by iron chains.

She
sits motionless, absolutely still.
with here eyes shut tight,
as her breath comes and goes
in long measured flows.

She
is the poet queen of Ai-tí.
And now she squats alone in a hut.
Chained.
In darkness.
With only the damp floor of Mother Earth
to comfort her.

She
begins to release tears
that fall to the ground
like offerings to the Great Bleeding Mother
La Madre Tierra
Itíba Cahubaba.

She
cries tears of sorrow
for a daughter who will not have
a mother to teach and to love her.

She
cries tears of sorrow
for the children who will now have to
endure a life of cruel enslavement.

And
she cries tears of anguish
for the earth of her island
that will no longer
be tenderly cared for
by the only people who are
are sensitive to her ways
and to her needs.

And
then she begins to hum.
And then she begins to chant.

She
chants the poem song that had been sung
on the morning that she was born.

She
chants the poem song that had been sung
on the day she became a woman
and was given a new name.

And
she chants the poem song that been sung
on the day when she felt
the labor pains
that seemed to tear her body apart.

And
then
she begins to sing
and cry with joy,
knowing
that she will soon be walking
in the radiant spirit land
where the ancient ones dwell.

But
for now,
she sits alone
on the earthen floor
of a hut.

Her
wrists and ankles
fettered by iron chains.

And
the moon in the sky
turns blood red in anger
as the poet queen
squats on the earthen floor
alone.


Anacaona was a cacique, a political spiritual leader, of the
Taino people in a region of the country known today as Haiti.

Copyright©2001
by Bobby Gonzalez from his book of poetry Song of the American
Holocaust: Native Poetry From the South Bronx Reservation.

The Poetry of Bobby Gonzalez: Anacaona