Poem… Skin of Blood

Skin of Blood

(translation|modification of Piel de Sangre)

by Luis S. González-Acevedo

Owner of the Caribbean, where are your dreams?
Little Caribbean native, what do you inherit from your parents?
The skin color stained across your chest
that an eternal Golden Century turns to blood.

Taíno boy, where is your mother?
I seek in vain the man you call father.
The boy answers: “Both will arrive very late,
when the native red of their hands turns to blood.”

You were a boy; you’re now a man –you confuse me.
Tears and sweat fall from your cheeks.
Do you sweat as you cry like the strong? Or…
Do you cry as you sweat, empowering the villainous traitors?

Caribbean native, break your chains and be free!
I invite you to the land that’s always yours;
its clouds lick blood from your body:
Paradise of Cacique Hayuya.

A paradise that wipes away all tears
and channels them into a crystal brook.
The celestial king kisses them with his rays and transports them
to a place that’s not a place –deadly for tears.


–You can find the poem in Caribbean Poet, by Luis S. González-Acevedo or the original version in Spanish in Poemas Caribeños, por Luis S. González-Acevedo–


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Poema… Piel de Sangre

Piel de Sangre

por Luis S. González-Acevedo

Dueño del Caribe, ¿Dónde están tus sueños?
Indiecito caribeño, ¿Qué heredas de tu padre?
Color de piel teñida sobre el pecho
que un Siglo de Oro eterno torna en sangre.

Niño Taíno, ¿Dónde está tu madre?
Busco en vano al varón que llamas padre.
Responde el niño: «Ambos llegarán muy tarde,
cuando el rojo indio de sus manos torne en sangre.»

Eras niño, ahora hombre –me confundes.
Caen de tus mejillas lágrimas y sudor.
¿Sudas al llorar como los fuertes
o lloras al sudar, beneficiando al vil traidor?

¡Indio, quiebra las cadenas y sé libre!
Te invito a una tierra que es siempre tuya,
cuyas nubes lamen de tu cuerpo sangre,
paraíso del cacique Hayuya.

Tierra que enjuga toda lágrima existente
y las encauza en un riachuelo de cristal;
las besa con sus rayos, las transporta el rey celeste
a un lugar, que no es lugar, para lágrimas mortal.


–Puede encontrarlo en el poemario Poemas Caribeños, por Luis S. González-Acevedo o la traducción | modificación en inglés en Caribbean Poet, by Luis S. González-Acevedo–


 


 

Poem… Legend of the Coquí


Legend of the Coquí

(translation|modification of Leyenda del Coquí)

by Luis S. González-Acevedo

Waters slither…
Eternal murmur of rivers
Be silent for a moment
Allow the perpetual expression
That will never quiet
The voice of a native
Injured in solitary suffering.

His word is a cry
Pain paralyzes his tongue
With his finger wrapped in flames
On a rock, he writes a testament
And signs with tears –Coabey.

Foolish intellectuals
The enigma on the rock
You’ve not deciphered:
My testament…
Inheritance of eternal weeping
Fixed in blood
Over the heart –mine.

In the profound nocturnal darkness
An arrow kisses my chest and grazes my soul.
Moribund and pierced, I stagger toward you:
River of patriotic waters, share your life!
Lick my wounds.
Even if my body dies
Far be it from my Name to die.

Only glimmers of life remain.
With my hands in the wound
I tear flesh & bone… Blood flows.

I rip out my trapped heart and surrender it to you
With my blood and soul in tears.

As my heart falls into your crystalline waters…
As my blood and tears drown in you…
Take them to the confines of our homeland
As they touch the souls of other natives
Sleeping in your riverbed
Transform them into Coquís…
Coquí… Coquí…

The little angels sing Coquí…
Anachronistic echo of Tears
Blood, Souls & Heartbeats.


–You can find the poem in Caribbean Poet, by Luis S. González-Acevedo or the original version in Spanish in Poemas Caribeños, por Luis. S. González-Acevedo–


 

Poema… Leyenda del Coquí


Leyenda del Coquí

por Luis S. González-Acevedo

Se desliza el agua…
Murmullo eterno de ríos
Calla un instante
Permite la expresión perpetua
que jamás callará
La expresión de un indio
herido en solitario sufrir.

Su palabra es un llanto
El dolor paraliza su lengua
Con su dedo envuelto en llamas
sobre piedra escribe un testamento
Lo firma con lágrimas, Coabey.

Intelectuales fatuos
El enigma sobre piedra
no han podido descifrar.
Es mi testamento…
Herencia de un llanto eterno
Plasmado con sangre
sobre el corazón –el mío.

En la profunda oscuridad nocturna,
una flecha, al besar mi pecho, rozó mi alma.
Moribundo y perforado, tambaleando llegué a ti:
¡Río de aguas patrias, comparte tu vida!
Lame mis heridas –y aunque muera mi cuerpo,
lejos esté de mi Nombre morir.

Sólo quedan destellos de vida
Con mis manos en la herida
desgarro carne, hueso –fluye sangre.

Atrapado el corazón, lo arranco y te lo entrego
con mi sangre y alma enjutas en una lágrima.

Al caer mi corazón en tus aguas cristalinas
Al caer mi sangre y lágrima en tu alma corriente
Transpórtalos a los confines de la patria
y al rozar el alma de otro u otra indígena
que en tu lecho duerma, transfórmalas en Coquí
Coquí… Coquí…

El canto que eleva el angelito –Coquí…
Eco anacrónico de una lágrima
Sangre y Alma
de mi corazón y su latir.


–Puede encontrarlo en el poemario Poemas Caribeños, por Luis. S. González-Acevedo–


 

The Poetic Story Of Princess Taína & Prince Connell’s Wild Atlantic Love

innisfree


The Poetic Story Of Princess Taína

&

Prince Connell’s Wild Atlantic Love

by Luis S. González-Acevedo


Note: After the poem, you’ll find an Explanation of Terms. The explanations will enhance your understanding of The Poetic Story Of Princess Taína & Prince Connell’s Wild Atlantic Love. I recommend you read the Explanation of Terms first.


I

Cross the Emerald Isle once more,
my Corracloona Prince and Leitrim Lord.
Easterlies will sail you –Connell– to her river’s ford.
But first, wage your loving war against the ocean’s roars,
that you may proudly disembark upon her island’s shores.
Thrust through the winding paths of Rich Port’s forest
as Taína’s prickling rains drown your Irish soul in peaceful rest
and guide you toward the island’s tropic center.
There, you’ll be compelled to render
your heart by love distressed.


II

Near Written Rock, Princess Taína splashes waters round her body by the river’s bank.
When you see her, –like the poet about Innisfree– this whisper from your lips will pour:
“I hear it in the deep heart’s core,”
where her image leaves an everlasting brand
as her eyes foreshadow the Puerto Rican poet’s chant
about the world illuminating with the memory of her gaze.
Princess of your lustful Hell, she’ll set your soul ablaze.
Interlocking eyes aflame will set as seals upon your hearts
–even if your cherished love is severed wide, oceans apart
and even after your demise at Prince Connell’s Grave.


III

As with all in life, my prince, the call for your departure shall arrive.
Toward Éire you’ll sail again against the ocean’s torture –its Wild Atlantic Way.
Westerlies will take you back toward Kiltyclogher’s sway
where day by day you’ll cry: Without her love, how am I to survive?
and she’ll proclaim: You’re mine, Connell. How shall I stay alive?
Today, the rains of Ireland are Connell’s ghostly tears;
and Caribbean hurricanes embody Taína’s torment in her lonely years.
The princess sculpted petroglyphs of love & lust on Cacique Hayuya’s rock
as she daydreamed of MacNean Upper –his island nation’s lough.
But with the passing of time came her greatest fear…


IV

Surrounded by the Emerald’s ancient forest,
on a hill overlooking fields and meadows,
your dying breath, fainting eyes and longing sorrows
will be soothed by magic stones singing megalithic echoes from the cleft
where your immemorial past will rest.
Taína’s soul will crest upon Poseidon’s wave.
The Caribbean princess shall ride the ocean’s waters brave.
In lust for you…
In love with you…
In search of her Prince Connell’s Grave.


V

The niche for the royal dead she’ll find.
True lovers’ fate will be Taína’s guide,
reversing what was severed by the sea’s divide.
You –from the ropes of death, the princess shall unbind
and your spirit she’ll rewind
back into her loving light,
both your souls afloat in flight
like reunited fluttering doves
for which eternity can never be enough,
entranced in Rich Port & Éire’s delight.


Explanation of Terms

Emerald Isle: a reference to Ireland.
Corracloona: a townland in County Leitrim, Ireland.
Kiltyclogher: a small village in County Leitrim, Ireland.
Leitrim: County Leitrim, Ireland.
Connell or Prince Connell: a reference to Prince Connell (from Irish legend). In this poem, he is fictionally buried in Prince Connell’s Grave.
Prince Connell’s Grave: a megalithic structure or monument in Corracloona, near Kiltyclogher. In this poetic fiction, Prince Connell is buried here.
Easterlies: winds traveling from east to west.
Westerlies: winds traveling from west to east.
Rich Port: a reference to the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico.
Taínos: the native people of Puerto Rico.
Written Rock: a reference to a large rock with petroglyphs inscribed by the Taínos in the municipality of Jayuya, Puerto Rico. The locals call it “La Piedra Escrita.”
“Cacique Hayuya’s rock”: a reference to the historical Taíno chief of the region known today as Jayuya, Puerto Rico. “Rock” is a reference to Written Rock.
Taína or Princess Taína: a fictional character whose name is derived from the native Taínos. In this poem, she is the fictional daughter of Cacique Hayuya.
“the poet about Innisfree”: a reference to Irish poet William Butler Yeats and his poem The Lake Isle of Innisfree. The last verse of his poem is quoted.
“Puerto Rican poet’s chant”: a reference to Puerto Rican poet José P.H. Hernández and his poem Ojos Astrales.
Éire: Ireland
Wild Atlantic Way: a scenic journey through Ireland’s west coast.
MacNean Upper: an Irish lake shared by the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Megalithic: relating to very large stones in ancient cultures.
Poseidon: the Greek god of the sea.