Monday, October 10, 2005

2 From DRIVE: "How Far's The War?" - "On Columbus Day" & "For My Ancestors Adobed In The Walls of The Santa Barbara Mission" (March 7 Archives)


for Russell Means

I would teach this day,
bind them to a presence
and death. Talk about what it means
to make sense, to catch
one's breath and lasso
da Vinci's star to your chest—
"He turns not back
who is bound to a star."

I heard this today
in the killer magpies,
a fray of desire
for meat, for prey.

Talk about a Nation
of Four Corners, summit
of the heart, the stone
pulling through, a concentric
concentration, a talking
to Infinity: The Constitution
of a Star of Unity
in the Iroquois

Talk about what we need
more of—some dangling
change, some synergy;
more love, more time to do it,
more Justice, more Virtue,
Fortitude, Prudence,
and Temperance—the Cardinal

I heard it say,
"We are our children's past,
and our heart's can affect
infinity...a responsibility."
Our hearts can beat
for eternity.

~ Lorna Dee Cervantes

*Leonardo DaVinci
*Russell Means - from a speech at the All Nations March, Denver, 10/03



after Phil Goldvarg

The bones that hold the holy.
Bones, grafted from bailing
and tar. The feathers
of a sleeker bird
resting in the nest.
The wry sense of autumn
calling like a winning smile.

The rapid fire. The wind
laid rest. The certainty
of servitude. The last ash
for the piki. Petals of a lost
desire. A woman's breast
releasing a flower of milk
on her dress. Buckskin bark
carpets the forests. Manzanita
swirls its own polish, her old bone
gleam. Her steady burn. The burl.

Bones weighed in at market.
The single bones, the married
bones with bands on bones.
Bones of a bonzai rectitude,
a fortitude of factories
on the horizon. Bones to raise
a Nation. An axe. An awl.
Bones stripped of their acorns.
Bones nipped from the grave.
Baskets of mourning
foreign to the settlers.
Baskets of bones
with rattlers inside.
Baskets of bones
with the teeth in hide.
Bounties of bones
with the people inside.

For every sale
there is a bone.
For every bone
there is a home
and a prayer
calling out the human heart,
chants on a drum
of human hide
with the bill of sale
still inside. And a brand
name still entails
a tag on the toe, a museum
label, a designer death
for you who were buried
with the names inside.

I say this peace, purple dove
of passion for you
who were robbed as bones.
For you who were stripped
of your meat. For you who were
worked to death grinding corn
at the metate you toted
for their feed, the sweet
smoke of age barely at your tail
when they packed you up
for the reinforcement.

Oh, Savior of the Mission of Bones,
Oh, Designer Death for the Architect,
Pope of the Bones
and the sainted orders--
the sainted terrorists.

Bones that hold,
the Holy.


c Lorna Dee Cervantes
first published in Divide, CU Boulder

(written for Transform Columbus Day Benefit,
Oct. 3, '03. Aztlan Theater, Denver)
Transform Columbus Day, Aztlan, 10/11/03


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