Poetry and Me

Today, I am working on my poems, and I must have hit a nerve.

I began to squirm.

Writing from a place of vulnerability can be exhausting, in part because of the emotional toll it can take on you. Exploring past issues, rehashing out experiences that were once dead and done, reliving memories can be hard.

Lately, I find myself sifting through a compartmentalized box of memories (good and bad).

Sometimes, we bury our feelings deep within the confines of our souls and never really find closure. We move on from a bad moment and some of us never get the closure we need. But, my personal trip down memory lane has left me with a sense of healing, or closure.

What does closure look like?

For me, it comes in the form of a series of poems that explore my life and identity as a woman, a minority, and mother trying to figure out who I am in the midst of trying to raise strong young women.

And, let me tell you I am tired.

I am tired of being subjected to a world that expects certain behaviors and norms in order to succeed. I am tired of the way society has created standards of beauty. I am tired of sitting in a room where I am silently criticized because I color my hair blue (purple, pink, and green) or I have henna on my hands. I’m tired of trying to fit into white America in my America.

But, in this exhaustion I also find truths.

I find that I love discovering myself. I love the beauty of language. I discover that the power of words can move me to tears, bring me joy, or bring me peace. In this vulnerable place of discovery, I use my words to heal my wounds, to find my serenity.

Within the spaces of my lines, I build my stanzas of truth creating my poetic voice.

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2019 All rights reserved.

I am still working on my goal of raising funds to attend the Martha’s Vineyard Institue of Creative Writing. It’s not easy to continuously ask with originality. Honestly, I am running out of words and thank yous. I have reached out my audience over and over again and I know they must be tired of me at this point but OH WELL I am being persistent.

Chasing what I want and taking the steps towards becoming a better writer.

It always amazes me how the most supportive are those who you would have least expected. Then, those who you thought would support you ignore you but everything in life is a lesson learned.

What I learned is that if I don’t keep at this I will not get anywhere. I can’t be a writer in the dark. I have to find the mentors and workshops, I have to work on my craft, I have to WRITE.

I need to be proactive and do the things that will help me with my craft (NO! I am not talking about witchcraft). Writing takes practice, dedication, and time. Writing is not an overnight success story in which your first attempt is a masterpiece.

So I am still asking for help if you are able to, a share helps too. Below is my Go Fund Me:

https://www.gofundme.com/creative-writer039s-dream

 

Releasing Writing Fears

I like writing but I am hesitant about sharing. Self-doubt, apprehension, and fear continuously rear their putrid heads over and over again.  The self-doubt and apprehension lead me to write. In part, I believe that this is an oxymoron because the fear and apprehension should make me run from the craft.

The exploration of my language leaves me at a loss sometimes. I am lost in my thoughts and words— constantly. I am lost in observation and I am lost in the wonderment of exploration. I can explore the darkest thoughts of my mind and create something truly unique or I can create a poem that embraces every romantic idea I have ever come across and yet somehow, I feel it’s never good enough.

It’s not good enough so it’s not worth sharing.

I have so many creations, characters, and plots that are begging for exposure.

They haunt my thoughts daily.

They chase me down dark damp dreary desolate corridors.

They rush to the forefront seeking the spotlight in the world. They long to enter the minds of others and leave behind an impression of existence.

And, then, there is me.

I stand in the way of everything. I place myself between the world and my words.

Is this intentional sabotage or uncertainty? It may be both.

So I have decided to make myself uncomfortable!   I am trying to share more, I am seeking exposure, albeit, baby steps but nonetheless steps in the WRITE direction.

The first thing I did was enter a poetry contest. This forced me to create and compile a collection of my poetry. A total of 51 poems which explore my love of poetry by exploring the concepts of identity, love, sex, fear, torment, nature, and any other experience of the human existence I could muster up from the left and right hemispheres of my brain.

I am also going to continue my novel, a multi-cultural contemporary romance novel sprinkled with history. The book explores the harsh realities of love, loss, grief, trauma, history and there is the possibility of happiness (this is still to be determined).

And—for my last trick there are these short stories I have been working on. Sorted little tales I take the most pleasure in writing.

I am exploring the world of writing, my world of writing. I am going to take the time and cultivate my craft and figure out what I will do with it in the next few months.

I invite you to share your writing fears, inhibitions or apprehensions. Expose them, explore them then release them.

Puerto Rico

I am writing today from within. I write from the roots of my being. I am an American, a Puerto Rican. I am the daughter of an island born on the mainland of a country in turmoil over identity. Today, I see inaction on behalf of other American citizens, on inhabitants of an island in despair.  Americans absent from inclusion, they live on an island bombarded by the waters of grief and we are all hurting. Our island is in trouble and we are stranded on the mainland, hopeless, fearful, and desperate.

La isla del encanto, la isla de mi niñez, drowned by a storm— is surfacing for air.

And I see all of us crying out for our people.

I see humanity emerging from the depths of tragedy.

We cry out with memories of a coqui singing, the sounds of parrandas bellowing through the night, el cuatro is the backdrop of my childhood, with trio music cascading through my memories.

I still smell el calor de la lluvia que cae en el verano and I hear my grandmother saying to me, “se caso la bruja, lluvia con sol.”  I can’t translate culture. I can’t turn this refrán into something that makes sense in English. Sometimes, I can’t make sense of myself in America, because I am  Puerto Rican. The earmarks of our culture lose meaning when we try to translate them.

We try to translate our being, our identity. We try to be American- but we don’t have to try because we are Americans with a dash of sazón.

Our culture is a mixture of history told over the sounds of an island’s melody for decades.

We are American. We are part of this country too; we are the people of a nation that ignores us.

We fight in wars, we work in your business, we are doctors, nurses, teachers, representatives, we even hold a position in the Supreme Court, we are Grammy award winners, Tony award winners, actors, actresses, sports players, musicians, rappers, poets, writers, executives, secretaries, your neighbors, and friends.

It saddens me that the tragedy which has fallen upon the birthplace of my ancestry has devastated the Motherland. But I want you to remember “Esta raza siempre es brava/ Aunque sople el temporal” (Residente, Hijos Del Cañaveral).

Don’t lose sight of the solidarity that has forged from this tragedy. Make an effort to help. Bring attention to the plight of our island; bring attention to the people of the island. Don’t sit down and remain silent, write letters make phone calls, donate money for relief efforts (Donating items is not always the best solution unless you know what is exactly needed. Avoid waste).

Find out where the relief efforts are, change the conversation of the nation unite with others and make CHANGE happen.

K.D. Dowdall : To Wish Upon a Star

To wish on a star in the dark of night shows true faith, belief and courage of the heart. That is what has been captured here by K.D. Dowdall. Please take the time to look at her blog you will not be disappointed.

Pen & Paper

If you wish upon a star,

For true love’s sake,

Please don’t tell it,

Where you are,

For stars are fire,

Burning bright,

And it will surely,

Take your sight,

For if your love is true,

No star can ere replace,

The light of love,

Upon your face,

Should there be,

The darkest night.

K. D. Dowdall

Copyright 2016

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Music Mondays: Changes

Change starts with you! Remember your history as a warning, learn from the lessons of the past. Changes start with people like us-it is up to us to make things all right.

 

 

Dear Lady Liberty

Dear Lady Liberty,

As you stand in the harbor watching over our nation, I imagine the tears falling down your face. I imagine your heart has been broken by the problems we have created. I imagine that as you are standing in the harbor you are watching how we systematically kill your children.  Today, you are the figure of a mother burying her children.

We will destroy the liberty and freedom we fought to create over the years. Marches occurred to fight for our rights, but overnight we seemed to forget the power “We the people” have. We continue to marginalize groups of people because they are different.

We have forgotten our past and ignored our history. We have tried to erase it. We have ignored the wound and now it is infected, and I apologize. Lady Liberty. I apologize for not taking care of your children or valuing the idea of freedom and liberty.

I apologize for the lack of effort to promote unity.

I am sorry.

I will apologize to you when the rest of the nation is in turmoil. I apologize while everyone else ignores that movements and moments start at home.

I have hope that we learn how to respect our differences. I hope that we will not forget our past. I hope, that we learn how to improve our future. I hope that as a nation, we figure out how to move forward together.

I hope that as the turmoil subsides we learn that we all must be part of the solution. Sitting by is no longer an option. I hope that we learn that small actions matter just as much and large ones.  I hope that we realize that change starts and ends with our efforts We have to stand up and move forward together.

We cannot forget the harsh truth of our past.  The hurt and pain we have faced as a nation. We cannot forget how you, Lady Liberty, witnessed what we have become as a nation. How we have built ourselves up by oppression. You watch how we beat down on others just to build up this American identity—an American identity which spans beyond the white skin or brown skin or yellow skin or tan skin, that any one of us possess. Our history is ugly, but our future can be great.

Our present should not be a movement to rewind the clock.

Lady Liberty, I extend my hand to offer you hope. All is not lost, but these are trying times.

I hope that I will leave a better nation for my children, for your children and all children.

I hope that we take back the power that we have been given as citizens and exercise our rights.

I hope that we understand.

Love,
Hopeful America

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2017 All rights reserved.

Music Mondays: Tell Me

Today, I will invite you to share some of your favorite songs for Music Monday.

What’s on your playlist?

What are you listening to right now?

Are there any artists or songs you want to hear next week?

🙂

Music Mondays: Residente’s Rap

Residente is one of my favorite rappers.

If you don’t understand Spanish, then you may not understand my fascination with this artist, but regardless I am going to share. My children listen to everything I listen to because they are always with me. Usually, my oldest daughter does not like my music choices but when she listened to Immigrants for the first time and heard Residente’s part she stated, “I feel bad for people who can’t understand Spanish because he killed it.” In other words she thought it was good.

Renee Perez, better known as Residente, has won a Nobel Peace Summit Award.  He has a  Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts and a Master of Fine Arts in computer animation. He makes references in his raps from Don Quixote to injustice. Residente is a part of a group named Calle 13, they have won approximately 24 Grammy awards. He provides lyrically rich content mixed with a real understanding of social justice. Then, switches it up to create an up tempo raunchy hit.

He’s an advocate of educaition and social justice and I just love him! Super Fan Girl and I don’t care!

About the Music:

The first one is an 8 minute dis track for a rapper named Tempo who wanted to battle over a comment Residente made about the genre of Reaggeaton being stale. Unfortunaltey, Tempo cant compare! Round two happened and Residente made a follow-up distrack, 11-minutes that just showed his superiority in the genre, once again.

Immigrants from Hamilton’s mixtape. “Sin pasaporte americano porque la mitadad de gringolandia es terreno Mexicano.” Loosely translated: “Without a passport because half of America was Mexican territory.”

El Aguante talks about all the thing we put up with as a people and society.

“aguantamos el que vende balas y el que la dispara
aguantamos la muerte de Lennon, la de Víctor Jara
aguantamos muchas guerras, la de Vietnam, la Guerra Fría
la Guerra de los Cien Años, la Guerra de los Seis Días”

We put up with those who sell the guns and those who pull the trigger
We put up with Lennon’s death and Victor Jara’s too
We put up with wars, Vietnam, the Cold War, the 100 years War, the Six-Day War.

Enjoy!