“A Chicano Poem” by Lorna Dee Cervantes

Migrare | Migrate | Change

A Chicano Poem

They tried to take our words,

Steal away our hearts under

Their imaginary shawls, their laws,

Their libros, their “Libranos señor”s.

No more. They tried to take

Away our Spirit in the rock, the Mountain,

The Living Waters. They tried to steal

Our languages, our grandmothers’ pacts,

Our magma cartas for their own serfs.

They razed the land and raised a Constitution,

Declared others 3/5ths a human being,

Snapped shackles, cut off a foot,

Raped our grandmothers into near mute

Oblivion. They burned the sacred codices

And the molten goddesses rose anew

In their flames. They tried to silence a

Nation, tried to send The People back

To the Four Corners of the world. They drew

A line in the sand and dared us to cross it,

Tried to peel off our skins, Xipe Totec

Screaming through our indigenous consciousness.

They tried to brand “America” into our…

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