Chicano Poet

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

La Maldicion

If Shakespeare put a woman into words,
would she resemble comedy, tragedy or sonnets?
Would he hide them in bodice or bonnets?

If William Carlos Williams put Elsie into words,
would he use the variable foot
or concentrate on her thighs, neglect the boot?

If Edgar Allan Poe manhandled his young bride,
would all the pieces be there at dawn,
except, of course, the hymen would be gone?

If you listen to Rod McKuen’s girlfriend
you’d think that broken hearts are great
choreographed to defoliate each mate.

But, if you hear the old Chicano poets calling,
don’t turn your back on them you sons-of-bitches
you weren’t even semen when they were digging ditches!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

El Hijo De Su

for H.Y.

I climbed the Alps with Allison.
We had a son-of-a-gun
when we were done.

He climbed a single Ande with Brandy.
They had a daughter,
the Incas brought her.

She climbed the Himalayas with Jose.
She got impregnated by a Yeti.
Jose came to America to pick spaghetti.

And to this very day,
the abominable son stays up high
denying the world with a Mexican eye.

Monday, January 29, 2007


The scientists arrived upon the scene,
astounded, brought there by wild rumors,
not believing their eyes.

Yet, there they stood in front
of the very tree Eve had eaten from
and handed the forbidden fruit to Adam.

Adam had swallowed it guiltily
just like the first time
he entered Eve.

The scientists stood in amazement,
shuffled from foot to foot
before the mythological tree.

And there was fruit upon it.
A female scientist reached for the fruit involuntarily,
she stopped herself, shook uncontrollably,

looked in horror at her colleagues
and gasped for ancient air.
The tree has seen it all---

leaf after leaf, branch after branch,
fruit after fruit, man after man,
God after innumerable God.


Friday, January 26, 2007


When Johnny comes hobbling home,
no arms, no legs, who gives a damn?
Beats me!

The statue of Saddam sits on the White House lawn,
damaged slightly from the fall.

When Janie comes hobbling home,
only her family will really care.
Hey, same shit, different day!

What came first? The chicken or the war?
And where do we go from here?
Beats me!


Thursday, January 25, 2007

Nude Wislawa Descending A Staircase

I went to England and laughed
at all the funny cars,
little nations do have little minds

Szymborska tried to tell us.
I went to America and was appalled
at the gas-guzzling giants,

big nations do have big, dumb minds.
I’m putting words in Szymborska’s mouth,
of course, but that’s ok.

I went to Paris and saw them crash,
they spoke just like de Sade,
dirty nations do have dirty minds

Szymborska tried to tell us.
I went to Poland
and laughed at all the funny scars.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Potato Eaters

for becky

They do not smell the oil lamp burning,
it does not make their eyes water,
the dust which fills the house

came from across the valley.
Outside, the stars
push on the roof with light.

The potato eaters huddle
in a hunger we can’t understand,
we don’t have the gut for it anymore.

The chairs are rough, uncomfortable perhaps,
table unsquare --- only the lamp
keeps the walls from crushing them, and us.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Lost Stone Temple Pilot

Tu y las nubes me traen muy loco,
tu y las nubes me van a matar,
yo pa’arriba volteo muy poco,
tu pa’abajo no sabes mirar.

Quetzalcoatl Incognito

Written on stone, in unknown jungles
the centuries pass, but the message remains the same,
sit back and enjoy the ride,

I’m your lost stone temple pilot,
if you look out the right side of the plane
you’ll see Aztlan,

if you look out the left side of the plane
you’ll see Aztlan---
if you see Aztlan

you’ll know you’re not in Kansas anymore,
this ain’t a place for Dorothies,
this ain’t a place for Totos,

I’m your lost stone temple pilot,
shedding my skin, shedding my blood,
shedding my sweat, shedding my life,

this is your pilot speaking,
we’re coming in for a landing,
we’re heavy as stone and light as feather.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Surrealistic Elegy For Ronnie Burk 1955-2003

In an affluent suburban Boston high school
a 16 year old white kid
stabs a 15 year old white kid to death while Oprah

builds a 40 million-dollar school in South Africa.
In East Africa man walks upright
and becomes uptight.

In Iraq today 24 soldiers are educated to death
while back home
freedom reigns supreme, apparently.

Ah thud ah sah ah poohdy cad
from the inside

was Tweety Bird’s last Chicano thought.

read Ronnie here

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Once Were Poets

Once were warriors, these poets, once
were champions; fit, young and tanned
in their battle dress, truth’s exemplars.

Once were worthy, these bravos, once
were steel to stand staunch to ideals,
unassailable in their righteous belief.

Once were harbingers, heralds of new
eras, angels of illusory imaginings where
truth holds a moral constituency.

Once wrote with meaning, once wrote
in fear-trembling hands words wielded
as swords in hand-to-hand combat.

Once died on the field. Once bled sweet
blood in wasted words and blighted breath
with no hope of temporal recompense.

Once were poets who clamoured keen
when hordes invaded, conceded their
scared land, wielded white handkerchiefs.

Once were poets
– who now entertain.

© I.D. Carswell 2007

Poem #15 of 365

America showed up onstage
the audience applauded
and the women wept

We want America to win
to persevere, to grow
and be proud of herself

It has been a long time
coming for America;
she hasn't always
been so supported.

America, she won
the Golden Globe
for best actress
in a tv comedy series.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez


I wrote identity and the poets picked up stones.
The scholars wanted me to sing a pre-written song.
The night fell and I couldn’t speak the things I dreamed.
I wanted to sing of light and a border’s nights.
I wanted to share the white stones with you,
to tell you how the letters in Spanish shine
in white stones on Juarez’s blue banks. The words
set in lines of stones, the arroyo below weedy dry.
I wanted to share the red sunset bleeding over the desert,
to find an “I” that belonged to a million girls.
I wanted to find a “we” therein that he could not sing.
He stole away the border in a byrd, stole away the river
in empty words. Truncated as we’d been for decades,
he stole away even with that silence. He said,
there is to be no talk of silence. And he laughed?
He demanded a new sentence as I caught my first breath.
He told me quietude was silliness as he talked and talked.
He said words were real, but it was I who bled all night.
He said words were absorbed and not absorbed.
The blood was wet.
The blood was dark.

copyright 2007 by Sheryl Luna

Friday, January 19, 2007

Rorschach Haiku

Under House Arrest

Not that you can do a thing about
those buzzards which circle
above you,

those great whites which cut you in half,
mountain lions lean on you and growl,
scorpions sting your lips,

you try to recite
the red wheelbarrow
to the chicken coop but nothing happens,

horses buck you off on winter ice,
buses will not stop for you,
airplanes never leave the ground for you,

but,at least,other poets kiss your ass
even though you just now
came out of the bathroom

with toilet paper tucked into your trousers
like a shirt,
not that you can do a thing about it.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Trying To Ignore La Llorona

Her eyes which used to be angels to look at
are now bloodshot holes,
only her sunglasses hide the facts.

Her once beautiful smile
is now a beak to speak,
her once luscious hips

pop a potpourri of noise
only outdone by her screams of pain.
Her perky breasts sag southpaw.

The creek, the trees, the meadows
brandish their weapons
and walk through stone.

Her Cinderella outfit lies tattered,
her barefoot couplets in the night
rhyme with the rain.

Lock the doors, pull down the shades,
turn up the television,
let’s pretend to be white tonight.

Ah, my Hispanic-Americans,
no poetry after Apocalypto

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


The Grim Reaper is thinking of Mark Strand.
He leans back in his thorny chair,
strokes his grassburr beard and says,

"I'm thinking of you,Mark Strand,
tomorrow I'll come swinging my scythe
making hay out of you,

put on your jacket and tie,
play the Monster Mash on your iPod
and pray to your iGod."

Just then Mark woke up from his nightmare,
put all his jackets and ties in the trash
and deleted every song from the evil, little device.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Texas Handsaw Massacre

When the President goes to the gallows
will he be as brave as Saddam
or will he soil his cowboy boots?

When they hang him high
will the White House spokesman lie
and call the butcher from Texas a hero?

When Cheney takes a picture
of the elongated neck with his camera phone
will he be smiling inside?

When Condoleezza pulls back the sheet
to reveal her favorite white man
will she recoil when he grabs her by the hand?

Friday, January 12, 2007


You said goodbye and the warmth
of your hips lingered against me all day long.
The dead birds in downtown Austin, Tejas

got up, flew off
and died again inside the capitol.
The security guards pulled out their guns

and filled them full of lead.
You said goodbye and the warmth
of your thighs lingered against me all day long.

The smell of natural gas
spread throughout Manhattan
and New Jersey,

up to the tallest building
and down to the house in Patterson
where William Carlos Williams lived.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Ya Estufas

Walk the coffin to the grave,
wipe the tears away,
mourners dressed in black,

an American flag on a simple box,
soldiers with rifles ready for the salute,
the winter sky itself wears gray,

somber clouds hanging overhead,
snowflakes suspended in the trees,
walk the coffin to the grave,

they’ll hand the loved ones Old Glory
and as that old lovable pig says…
Th… Th… Th… That’s All Folks!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Castle

The castle was mortgaged to pay for war,
moat, boat, throat, Rose Garden,
the Queen’s oval orifice, plasticware,

the Marine guard doesn’t flinch when pinched.
The castle has been crumbling
since the bastard king moved in.

Rooms inhuman, cold as Arctic,
pantries full of mold, truth untold,
termites smile when you confront them.

The princesses are whores,
the Queen doesn’t care
as long as they don’t have to go to war.

The castle looks at famous views,
historic sites, parks, the mall where anti-war hippies
and poets once hung out.

The castle offers panoramic vistas of battlegrounds.
And the monuments of war
welcome the newly fallen soldiers without much emotion.

Monday, January 08, 2007

The White House Was Quiet and the World Was Calm

The White House was quiet and the world was calm,
the President fussed over a pimple on his chin.

An alien book sat on a nearby table,
it beckoned to be opened but persisted closed.

The words spoke loud and clear but were ignored,
the words told of a war so very far away,

but the summer night was just the right degree
while half a world removed soldiers died hot,

while half a world removed soldiers died cold.
The book did not have to be opened at all,

the world was perfect as it was
except for the pimple on his chin.

The White House was quiet and the world was calm,
he would insist on that tomorrow and tomorrow

when he went before the people of America.
He fled to bed still bothered by the blemish.

Suggested by a post at Andrew’s blog
about a Wallace Stevens poem.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

The other day (as opposed to today) I was sitting
by my seameant pond re-reading Judson Jerome’s
The Poet’s HandBook refreshing myself on
accentual meter to prepare for a project commissioned
by the University of Texas at Austin. They pay
their football coach millions but they can only
pay me 10,000 pesos to translate Beowulf into
Esperanto. Anyway, I ran into the shortest poem
of all time, FLEAS, which I will quote later
with a couplet of my own making, of course.

So before God created woman, Adam used to lie
around watching aforementioned football games on TV,
eating whatever fruit fell to the ground, taking
a bite of whichever animal wandered by, he’d
scratch himself, he’d play with his dog even
though the dog had just licked his dog balls.
He was, in other words, a content, lazy slob.
But then God created woman and Adam had
to clean up his act.


had ‘em.
forbade ‘em.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Mr. Bones ‘Tis Rudely Awakened From A Dream Song
At San Gabriel Park

I’m sitting in the park
working on a dream song
when at the nearby parking lot

an asshole honks at a goose
which has taken a liking to the parking spot
the asshole wants.

I look up and see
that it’s a teenage boy
and his girlfriend.

Ah, I think to meself:
the epitome of arrogance
which forever holds mankind back.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Breaking Up With QuickDraw McGraw
(And Don’t You Forget It, Babalooey!)

You don’t know what to do with yourself,
you broke up to down
and turned your smile into a frown gown.

Once you crossed the line from mine,
the summer roses that was growing in your arms
gone to bring you fire alarms.

You don’t know what to do with yourself,
nope, you woke up to poke a dope,
had your heart set on other folk bloke.

Once you left me and bereft me
‘twas no longer my belonger,
I can’t help you with your pelt kabonger!

Listen to the song hear!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Henry’s Elegy For The King Of “You Scratch My Back
And I’ll Scratch Your Back”

President Ford has died,
President Chevy has died,
President Buick has died,

President Saab has died,
President BMW has died,
President Toyota has died,

President Yugo has died,
President Ford has died---
Fix or repair daily no more.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Until The Next Teardrop Falls

I can’t wander there
and you can’t wander there
though we’re only separated by the air.

I could reach up and touch your face,
you could reach down and touch my face
if God had any grace.

We’re not separated by much,
there’s no distance, dawn or spear
between those we hold dear.

But I can’t wander here
and you can’t wander here
though we’re only separated by a tear.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Ferry Across The Mersey

If only you could see me now, mother.
I’d just turned twelve
when God took you away.

Ever since then
me and the big man
have been at odds with one another.

He wins most battles, yes,
and I commit another sin,
sometimes I’ll even sneak in a good deed.

Imagine that! Well, imagining
is about all you can do, I guess.
But, we’re in the same boat, albeit on different ends.

Do yourself a favor,
read a poem by Ivan Carswell.