We would like to share some poetry from our transference here in the high New Mexican desert. As a group, students came up with twenty adjectives to describe their experience of the course so far.
Next, students circled four pieces of paper and each wrote two lines of a poem, then folded the paper so only the last line was visible to the next person. Each of the four poems was guided by one of our course themes and the only condition was that they could not use any of the twenty words on the list! These are the results!
providing fluidity to the border.
A force so wild is controlled,
someday human systems will fail.
Water is the only thing that will prevail
unless we make it all disappear.
Her power and majesty that has been held for generations
would be lost upon her people
without her powers of resilience and restoration,
she flows and ebbs and feeds her people,
slipping to her bold, swift ending.
And wishing so desperately for him to be a river,
flowing constantly away and taking all surrounding residue with him,
being used one last thousand times
before disappearing into infinity.
Having water is a privilege
but everyone needs it.
It is a commodity on our shelves
no matter how present on our planet.
We never have enough.
It is finite.
The world is 3/4 water
but only a fraction is kind towards us.
Drip or down
the river is shaped like a frown.
Growth is often hard to quantify
you can’t count it on your fingers or toes.
It’s measured by smiles and tears,
sometimes you don’t even realize ’til it’s over
that in you sleeps dormant, strength and power,
expectations are challenged,
views will evolve.
We realize we are a part of the system
that people spend their lives trying to dissolve.
At what point is there nothing left
but primordial ooze
coursing through my veins
giving me life?
My mind expanded
and my soul was nourished
my neurons reconnected
my world suddenly larger
my mind was challenged
my perceptions changed.
My heart and mind will expand, expand, expand.
I will bring with me all that was taught.
The Border & Immigration
Whether a river or a wall
it is an artificial divide.
A one-way street
where people lose their lives trying to swim against the unforgiving tide.
For those who can follow the flow
the border is beautiful and takes you in with open arms.
The border divides us
and unites us.
People are treated like dogs on the other side
of an invisible fence,
a border that looks like and should be so easy to cross is almost as impossible as a wall.
Border patrol carries out the cruel treaties
handed down by the government.
The border like a serpent
it weaves where it wants to
real or imaginary
the consequences are impenetrable.
Humans are broken, money is made.
It will be changed with action, not only faith.
We have the power to change this absolute horror,
but only if we take the time to undo prejudice
and unwind its source
painfully thread by thread.
“Desde el momento en que te ví, yo sabia que eras tú.”
How many moments like this have been lost between the barbed wire?
Indigeneity & Colonization
Foreigners from far away
come to stay
stolen land is occupied
acting as thought it is our own.
The soil corrupted
and the hearts broken
no words of joy or love will be spoken
regaining the human soul should be our goal.
In the power we gain,
we return to the earth.
And in a way, the earth returns to us, too,
for the earth and I have more similarities than differences.
Working constantly in opposition,
invisible in plain sight.
Yet our whiteness will never be invisible,
no matter how many people make it their life’s work to see that it will be.
You can show your indigeneity through your appearance and actions
but you still need a card to prove it.
The indigenous identity remains in the white man’s terms,
although we were the ones that came to their part of this earth
we claim it as our own
with no regard for who it belongs to.
It’s eye opening the older I grow,
to learn about the privilege and power I have that so many others do not.