Chicano Poet

Friday, April 29, 2005

Broke Down In Miniville

The old buckboard (read RV, silly!) broke down just as we passed the Y at Skidmore, axle sheared. Went to the local Goodyear, it was very a bad year (sorry,old blue eyes) , no darn Goodyear store in miniville. Mr. Bones' attire,
old army pants with quilt-work patches and a MASH T-shirt didn’t go well with the local yokels. Miss Betty Hass was showing too much thigh for the church-going hell-going crowd. We finally had to email the Amish poet/blacksmith Bin Therestillthere in Pennslyvania for a replacement part. Bin is probably the greatest Amish poet of this century, not a bad half-assed blacksmith either. Bin Fedaxed the axle to us, unfortunately Fedaxe does not deliver to mininville or minivile as Miss Betty Hass calls it. We had to take the Mexico to Dallas illegal express Brownhound to Beeville to pick up the part.

Meanwhile, Mr. Bones was reciting poetry to the locals, infuriating all of them. Henry wishing Mr. Bones was behind chickenwire, but the tomatoes never flew, perhaps , being unknown in these here parts. Henry kept sweating bullets the size of the ones on the deputies belt, the deputy cocked his cowboy hat and couldn’t quite figure out the Papalote Travelling Poetry Circus. But, from the look on his face you could tell he’d rather be french-kissing a greased pig then put up with this spectacle. Luckily I got the new axle on the buckboard and we headed out of Dodge just as a Dodge dually kicked up gravel in our faces. Pebbles flew up Miss Betty Hass’s short skirt.
From the back of the buckboard we had giant ghetto speakers that blared our mp3 collection. When it went from John Lennon’s Give Peace A Chance to Junior Brown’s Highway Patrol it startled the locals who had gathered to see the hippie trailride leave their hallowed ground. To make matters worse the Indonesian poet Chairil Anwar had climbed onto the roof of the buckboard and was reciting his poetry over the loud speaker, an ugly Junior Brown karaoke.


Like my mother , and my grandmother too,
plus seven generations before them
I also seek admission to heaven
which the Moslem Party and the Mohammedan Party
say has rivers of milk
and thousands of houris all over.

But there’s a contemplative voice inside of me,
stubbornly mocking: Can you ever
get dry after soaking in the blue sea,
after the sly temptations waiting in every port?
Anyway, who can say for sure
that there really are houris there
with voices as rich and husky as Nina’s, with eyes
that flirt like Jati’s?

The locals thought, “This guy just got off a freighter in Corpus Christi.” They were a clairvoyant crowd because Chairil had indeed just arrived in Corpus Christi by freighter. I was glad we were on the road again.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Hieronymouse Bush In Papalote

Mr. Bones steals the skin
from Lady Lazarus,
the breast skin,

the vagina skin,
the eyebrow skin,
the innocent elbow skin,

he wanders out into Papalote,
the American Gothic couple
stare in awe and disgust,

pitchfork at the ready,
needle in a haystack---
no problemo , , , , ,

Mr. Bones shows off
thighs that used to belong
to the Lady,

one rear in every ten,
and the London winter
too large for Papalote,

a bun in the oven,
the bread spreading nickels,
Papalote won’t recover.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

The Papalote Travelling Poetry Circus

Had a little trouble streaming with WMP (Microsoft spelled backwards spells dog) had to switch over to more blotware, Quicktime. Anyway, streamed Frieda’s reading to most of Aztlan and then some. I heard from some people that the video stream was like two feet faster than the speed of light, and then others said, “Where the hell is it?”

For you Austin poetry affected-aniados Frieda will be reading this coming Saturday night at Koko’s Koffee Kshop, just a few blocks from Mt. Bonnell.
She looks hot in those leather pants, no, no, she looks hot in those leather pants. Mr. Bones fell all over her, no, no, I mean he fell all over her, he tripped on the stage, the big dumby. Frieda was embarrassed for him, somebody had to be! Also, be forewarned, Mr. Bones, Henry, me and my new girlfriend, Miss Betty Hass (picture later) will be taking the buckboard up to Austin. Expect delays on I35, you crazy Austin drivers---we’ll be in the fast lane going twenty. Here’s a poem by Frieda.


The poet as a penguin
Sat in his snow-cold, nursing
The egg his wife had left him.

There it was, born of them both,
Like it or not. Rounded in words,
And cracking open its shell for a voice.

In the blizzard,
Beaten up from the arctic flats
Were the audience.
From the glass extensions
Of their eyes, they watched
The skuas rise on the updraft,

Every snap of their beaks
Like the tick of a knitting needle,
Hitching a stitch in the wait

For a rolling head.

copyright by Frieda Hughes.

Also reading will be the elusive but fantastic Chicana Poet Rebecca Gonzales(she’s a knockout!). Read em and weep, you creeps!

Withholding Evidence

Like a probing jealous lover,
x-rays drill through my pelvis.

I hold my breath.
withholding pictures
of you taking root in me,
you and me in every conceivable way.

In a second it finds me innocent,
shows me smug evidence,
black-and-white absolute:
nothing but held-together bones,
not even touching in spaces
that are a hollow cry.

I smile a quiet victory,
knowing it isn’t always so.

copyright by Rebecca Gonzales
from the book Slow Work To The
Rhythm Of Cicadas.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

For those of you within snorkeling distance of Papalote, we invite you to the Papalote Writer’s Colony on County Road 666 (I swear I am not kidding) to hear Frieda Hughes (yes, that Frieda Hughes) read her poetry at 7:00 p.m. tonight. Mr. Bones will also be reading and swooning and actively imagining all sorts of forbidden things. Henry will emcee. Bring a covered dish if you wish, but you’ll look like a fool if you do. Mr. Bones has convinced Frieda to read a couple of her mother’s poems. The reading will be streamed live via Windows Media Player right here on the chicanopoet broadcasting network. Be there or be square. Con/Safos.

Monday, April 25, 2005

The Sumerians

"the vicious creature jumped
from monkey to man."
Elvis Costello

The helicopter was shot down
onto the desert,
the lone survivor shot dead

by his captors
as revenge for the Iraqi
killed in the Fallujah mosque.

An eye for an eye,
a tooth for a tooth,
an act of barbarism

for an act of barbarism.
There is absolutely
no difference whatsoever.

The twisted,
unrecognizable burning metal
of the Russian-made helicopter,

the lone survivor,
a Bulgarian pilot,
bullets entering his flesh,

flesh ripped apart,
blood vessels ruptured,
blood flowing on the desert floor,

the eyes wide open,
barely alive,
I’m barely alive,

so this is what it feels like
to be alive and dead.
In between, there is this.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Indy 500

I put on my socks
one foot at a time
just like everybody else,

ten toes,
two feet,
twice the task

for a little boy.
The socks were nondescript
and made in America,

the toys
I played with
made of metal

stamped in the Midwest,
toy tractors,
toy cars,

Indianapolis race cars
fit in my small hand
as they raced

on the living-room floor,
winning the Indy 500
of my chicano race

as dad repaired cars
in the dirt driveway at night
and share-cropped the fields during the day

in the white man’s tractor,
black soil piled into rows
awaiting the corn, the maize, the cotton,

only now
in my mind,

the Turn Four wall.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

When The World Was Only Eight Years Old

In winter we had
only a wood burning stove
to keep warm,

mama closed off
all but one room
(the bedroom)

and if we wanted
to stay warm
that was the room

to be in.
The kitchen, the bathroom
and the other bedroom

were always freezing.
Out in the backyard
the dog shivered,

in the other bedroom
my books froze
to the Arctic bookshelves---

Spring was for the white man
in his cozy house
I thought.

Now,fifty years later
my house is warm
like the white man's house.

is either
good or bad.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


We were so poor
when we were growing up
Christmas meant

a pair of socks for me,
and that was it.
My uncle Frank

and Aunt Luisa
gave me those socks
once a year

I needed them
or not.

These were not the socks
from Neruda’s
Ode To A Sock,

these were not
insect socks,

these were not
sock drawers
in a Borges mirror,

these were plain and simple
brown, chicano

Now all
I needed
was zapatos.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

I Am Joaquin,Tambien

I am Joaquin,
not Steve McQueen,
not Juan Seguin,

sometimes you gotta
tell it like it is,
not give a piss,

sometimes you make enemies
when you tell the truth,
ask Doctor Ruth.

I am Joaquin
and though Corky's gone,
always address him as Don,

don't call me Mister,
don't call me Senor,don't tell me
La Malinche was a whore.

I am Joaquin,
not Don McLean,
American pie don't mean beans,

the red white and blue
applies only to one color
and only if you got the dolars.

I am Joaquin,
say what you will,
do what you want,

it won't change a thing,
don't put up a fight,
I won't lose sight!

I am Joaquin,
I have a one track mind,
I won't put up with your kind!

Friday, April 15, 2005

Dream House

The house on Fourth Street,
my grandparents
two-bedroom house,

when my father
discarded us,
Valentin, Julian, Maria and me

after my mother died
in 1960
I was twelve.

The toilet
newly built inside,
the outhouse an outcast like us kids.

The shower was outside,
cold water,
cold memories.

Other poor people
were rich compared to us.
Why is my family so backward

asked my little mind.
Now the scars
are covered with scars

and there is no pain whatsoever.
I hope my siblings
have fared as well

because we don’t talk about
being abandoned
like a litter of puppies.

But, I can tell you this,
the puppies grew up to be
beautiful dogs.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

The Yellow Rose Of Texas

The yellow-bellied rose
of Texas
was blooming like a bitch,

the snitch, the witch,
dead in the ditch,
the Mexicans

lynched by the white man
in his effort
to make Texas white

back in the Thirties
my relatives
hogged-tied and killed.

Much has changed
and much
has stayed the same.

Here in my county
the Klan is blooming white,
the white rose of Texas,

the cops are Klan,
the judges are Klan

when they burn a cross
on your lawn
it’s by legal means.

Their hood
is still the Texas flag
even if Willie Nelson sings it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Our Hero’s Latest Book

“I read the latest
book by Mecreo Gringo
and I can’t

tell him apart
from every other
white man!” observes Mr.Bones.

So Henry
picks up
the hero’s book

and reads
to his astonishment
the poetry that

only sparkles
if you sprinkle
Cheech and Chong’s magic dust

upon the
desultory words
of chicano poetry gone bad---

the elements
are missing from
Juan Seguin Elementary.

You can’t make
out of white bread.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Electric Desgraciado

The Guadalupe Street gangsters
used to shave their heads,
electric desgraciado,

now the swings
at Blumberg Park
swing coke and rocks,

the marijuana
becomes the piranha,
asshole Amazon.

Sittting in Janay’s car
my hand in her underwear,
windshield wonder.

The car was flying sugar,
headlights spinning,
and hood in the neighborhood.

There’s a house fire
on the corner of Tony Lee and Fourth,
her haiku eyes piss me off.

What do you expect
out of a high school girlfriend,
we made up like moths.

My grandmother’s on the wooden porch
yelling I have school tomorrow,
the barrio swirls like a mirror,

there’s only so much room
to be reflected,
steering wheel silly,

no brakes,
impure chicano poetry,
gravel in the mouth of the poet.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Deep In The Heart Of Texas

Zapped from forlorn Texas
the honorable Robert Creeley
and his care

for Mabel, hunks of meat,
our blind visions,
Poteet strawberries,

a red wheelbarrow
floating in the oozing Passaic,
or across the continent,

the vulva of LA,
the streetgangs fight turf
at a high cost,

new humans come out
of the production line,
this year’s model.

Go ahead, save the world
for the white man
is all you can say now.

New England’s
Miss Emily Dickinson
borrowed to swerve,

her smile
is a fast-food joint
in shorts.

So you go on fighting
the enemy
with his own swords,

you use his tactics
because that’s how
he’s kept you down---

from the
little zapping place!

Friday, April 08, 2005

Mighty Mouse

You got a
Republican cat
you need declawed?

Mighty Mouse
is on the way
though the costume

fits Mr. Bones
a little tight.
“That’s one

hell of a wedgie,
Mr. Bones!”
Laughed Henry,

“I never would
have thought
red and black

would be your colors.”
Mr. Bones whiplashed
his tail

and flew off
into the air
to save the day.

Dubya meowed
his nine
cowardly lives.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Notes Toward A Supreme Truth

The crown of thorns
is stuck to my butt

that I strike down those
who don’t observe
the rules of fools.

Henry wakes up
from his sleep.
Mistress Bradstreet’s

thighs akimbo.
Some strange god of lint

the elevated trains
tie their shoestrings together
and tumble, of course.

Henry kisses her stomach
on the white curves
of Sunday,

tacos for breakfast.
New York City
stabbed into the land

like a wooden stake
shoved into Dracula’s heart,
termites all about.

A black hole
the size of
Henry’s pajama string

sucks up Riker’s Island
kitten claws.

Mistress Bradstreet
has been
a bad girl.

Wallace Stevens
in the closet,

or on a hill
in Tennessee
in a parallel universe.

Henry scratched himself
as he headed
into the starry space

in front of him.
The atoms of air
rang like bells of fire.

Mistress Bradstreet
turned over on her side.
The sheets crumpled a toy language.

Her lips smeared paradise.
Eve would
have been jealous, jealous, jealous---

still, the mirror
of forbidden fruit

and Henry stepped upon it
that God was someone important.

the toilet,

the toilet lid
Henry Church.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Henry’s Edmund Fitzgerald

Henry had a wreck
in his pickup truck,
bumper gone,

radiator leaking,
fenders crunched.
If the poem

hadn’t been wearing
a seatbelt,
it might have lost

a couplet.
There was wreckage
scattered everywhere,

it was
a languishing poem
waiting to happen.

Henry got out
of his truck
swearing in yiddish,

or kaddish.
Hell, Ann Marie has appropriated
all them fancy words

so Henry’s wreck
is devoid of them,
except for this tailgate,

as in you’ll have
to put the “tailgate” down
if you want to see it---

two lines of poetry
to be last.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Cicatriz Chicana

This is the scar
right here
on her belly

where they cut
her ovaries out,
no more brown children

to run around
the apartment building,
grow up to join

the barrio gangs,
get shot,
get knifed, get beat up,

not just by punks
but by society
in general.

Every once
in awhile---
an exception,

this barrio boy
or girl
grows up to write,

to battle words
just like you she says
as she pulls the jeans over her scar.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Tierra Cero

“He said we were a bunch of Arabs coming in to blow up New York.”
Dean Moriarty in On The Road

Henry and Mr. Bones
take the subway
to Ground Zero,

the big hole in the ground
like the big hole
in the heart,

the tell-tale heart
still beating
inside Edgar Allan Poe,

the Hudson held back
by man-made walls,
pressure per square inch

can not be calculated by math.
Above them, the kamikazes
dive from the sky

as the rising sun
pierces the
New York City morning.

Turning and turning
in the widening gyre,
the center can not hold,

collapsing like a black hole,
not even light can escape---
photon upon photon crushed against photon.

Friday, April 01, 2005

America The Beautiful

Mr. Bones is brown
and round
like a Mexican girl

who’s giving birth
to a bunch of brown children
to keep America beautiful,

trimming the trees
at the mall,
cutting your yard in the suburbs,

working the temp jobs
in your factories,
in your chicken plants,

in your slaughter houses
at home
and abroad.

And you, America,
you treat them
like whores.