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Text and Translations

Mezclamerican

Mira mis raices (Look at my roots)
Can you see que entrelazadas son (How intertwined they are)?

Una mezcla (a mixture) of the Old world
And the New.

 

Sigue la raíz más larga y honda (Follow the longest and deepest root):

Ella pertenece a la gente (She belongs to the people)
Que poblaban la tierra (Who populated the land)
Desde la antigüedad (Since antiquity).

 

Higher up - clinging for dear life -
Are the roots of those who came later:

Violently, Violently thrusting onto
The Ancient “New” World,
And now, now I am caught
Speaking a strange tongue;
My native voice rejected
And ignored.

 

Mira esta Flor de Maga desplazada (Look at this displaced flower):

Her petals have been bleached
By the ferocity of a white sun,
Mientras sus raices se secan (Meanwhile her roots dry out)

En la tierra explotada (in the exploited soil).

 

In her roots, a thousand thousands of stories

Shouting to be heard.
Twisted, fighting
For what little is left in the earth.

 

When they cry I hear music

That I can’t understand,

Being denied the sounds

And the songs of my own,

And now, now I am lost

Seeking a strange tongue:

My native voice, rejected

And ignored.

 

How does it feel to be
A Mezclamerican?
Conquered and Conqueror struggle as one.
Can they learn to embrace one another,
O se asfixiarán (Or will they strangle each other)?

 

So I drift, una semilla de Amargón (A dandelion seed):

Puedo sembrar (I can plant) in any ground,
Searching for a Native soil
I’ve not yet found.

Community+

Let’s build a place
Where all people can go,
Those who struggle to face who they are.
Let’s give them a space
Where all people can grow
And glow from within to become their brightest star.

Let’s find a place
For the young and the old,
Those for whom human grace has been denied.
Let us help them to chase
Their ambitions of gold.
For it’s not at the end of the rainbow,

It’s right inside.

We’ll show them home.
Come home,
Where you are seen for who you are.

 

Let’s build a place
Where all people can find
Those who wear the robes of “family” in their mind.
Let us embrace
Those who have fallen resigned,
And wrap them back up in the cloak of Humankind.

 

Let’s make a place
For all those set apart,
Those transitioning or genderless in their heart.
If we give them a place
Where they can also take part
In Dignity and Love, it would be a start.

 

So come home.
Come home,
Where you are Loved for who you are. Come home,
Where you are perfect as you are.

 

I am a Queer Woman.
That’s MY identity.
No one else has a claim to say otherwise than me.
When you are a part of this Community Then everything you are you get to be.

 

Until there’s a place
Where all people can go
Where we’re not “othered” just for being who we are,
We’ll build a place
Where our family can grow,
And ours will be the most welcoming by far.

 

We'll call it “Home.”
Come home,
Where you will be heard and understood.
Come home,
You always are welcome.
And someday we will say
Our LGBTQIA’s,
In all the ways that we are made,

Came out better being raised
By our Community.

A Mother's Lullaby To Her Daughter

Do you know who mommy loves?
Do you know that Mama loves you?

Yes... Mama loves you so very much...

Georgia...

 

You make me proud.
You are so very wise and brave,

And every day I am amazed

That one so young

 

Could seem to know
About what matters most in life,

And understands a song that I

Have never sung.

 

I want you to always be yourself

Even when that’s hard...

Mama loves you...
And I want you to stand up for those

Who cannot stand up for themselves.

And for yourself.

 

For we must try
To keep compassion in our hearts

Despite the hate that tries to part us

From our dreams

 

And may you grow
To see a kinder world than this

Where no one ever is dismissed

For who they are or who they kiss.

I wish you all the joy,
My dearest Georgia...

 

Now sleep, darling, go to sleep...

You are loved,
You are so loved.
Now sleep, may your troubles seep away

With all your worries from today.

 

Storm clouds soon will pass.
The world will not always be this way

Because of people...
People like you, Georgia...
Yet sometimes it may feel
Like you cannot muster
Another ounce of hope
Or optimism.

 

But we must try.
We must keep hope within our hearts

And we must open up our minds.

That is how the healing starts
And this is how we will rebuild,
Dear Georgia...

 

We see those who need our help,
And we help because that’s what kind people do.
When we see those who need us to lift them up,
We do.

I. Vientos del Otoño

Vientos del otoño,
A dónde andarán?

Cuando acabe el año,
Sus alas desplegarán?

Así las alas de mis sueños

Me liberarán.

 

Vientos poderosos

Sin límites de ser,

Destinos numerosos

Ya ahora esperan ver

Los regalitos gloriosos

Que van a traer.

Fuera yo experto,

Como el viento, a volar;

Me iría de este desierto

Para nunca regresar.

 

Oh, Vientos! Que me alumbre

El saber de su edad.
Que porten mi pesadumbre
A la oscuridad,

Y tráiganme hacia la cumbre

De felicidad.

I. Winds of Autumn

Winds of Autumn,
Where will you go?
When the year ends
Will you spread your wings?
In this way the wings of my dreams

Will free me.

 

Powerful winds
Without limits to your being,

Numerous destinations

Even now expect to see

The glorious little gifts
That you will bring.

Were I an expert
Like the wind at flying;
I would leave this desert

Never to return.

Oh, Winds! May the wisdom of your age

illuminate me.
May you carry my grief
Into the unknown,

And bring me to the peak

Of happiness.

II. El Pozo

En los momentos de quietud

Me hallo sentado al lado
De un pozo profundo y oscuro.

Sus piedras agrietadas

Revelan la falta de mi cariño,

Porque el pozo es mío.

 

Allá diviso, a mi vergüenza,
Cómo he ignorado

el fundamento de vivir
Aquí, en el lugar donde extraigo
Las aguas de la vida.

 

¿Qué me importa una cosa innoble?

¿Por qué me afecta su fachada tanto así?
¿Cuál secreto en las profundidades

Has tú escondido de mi?

En la vida no me falta nada
Pues a la riqueza de fortunas me rendí.

Soy persona que es muy ocupada
Y no hay momentos para meditar en ti.

Pero, ¿qué me vale toda de esta acumulación?
Aislado soy y miserable, sin trayecto.

¿Adónde voy?

¿Qué quiero yo en la vida?
¿Cuál pasión me inspira?

¿Y qué es la valía
De pasar un momento con un pozo?

Esta apertura a la creación....

 

Entonces tomo una pausa
Y pienso sobre la carga
Y la cuesta de cada elección.

 

Ahora yo, finalmente,
Comienzo a ver que esta fuente

Siempre estaba en la vereda conmigo

Aquí, en el lugar donde extraigo
Las aguas de mi vida.

 

Agarro el pozo en un abrazo cariñoso.

Lo cuido porque el pozo es mío.

 

Oh, pobre pozo que he abandonado,

Cómo me cansa el vivir...

 

“Aquí puedes rejuvenecer el sentir.”

¿Puedes disculpar mi descuido e ineptitud?

“Aquí reflejo sólo el vicio y la virtud.”

¿Pero cómo avanzo?

“Con amor. Con amor.”

II. The Well

In moments of quietude
I find myself seated beside

A deep, dark well.
It’s cracked stones reveal

The lack of my care,

Because the well is mine.

There I see, to my shame,
How I have ignored
The foundation of living
Here, in the place where I extract

The waters of life.

Who cares about such a crude thing.

Why does it’s appearance affect me so?

What secret have you hidden from me

In your depths?

I lack for nothing in life since I’ve surrendered to riches and money.
I’m a very important person, and there’s no time to spend thinking about you.

 

However, what is all this money worth to me?
I am alone and miserable, without a path.

Where am I going?
What do I want from life?
What passion inspires me?
And what is the worth of spending

a moment with a well...
This aperture into creation.

 

Then I take pause
And think about the burden

And the cost of every decision.

Now, finally,
I begin to understand that this fountain

Was always in the path with me
Here, in the place where I extract
The waters of my life.

I hold the well in a caring embrace.
I care for it because the well is mine.

Oh, poor well, which I have abandoned,

How life exhausts me...

“Here you can rejuvenate your senses...”

 

Can you forgive my neglect and ineptitude?

 

“Here I reflect only vice and virtue.”

 

But how do I move forward?

 

"With love. With love.”

III. El Mundo

Mágico es el amor
Que me siento por toda la flora
La fauna, la gloria de la naturaleza.

Que mágico!

Asombrosos colores
Que vibran en el prado de flores

Bailando en los rayos del sol.

Es un templo fantástico!

El sol...La luna...
Como brillan en las aguas
Que reflejan su luz!
Y yo, entre esta cuna,
Estiro los brazos en forma de una cruz.

Oye el tono en la brisa:
El aplauso de las hojas a misa.

Celebran a cada poetisa
En su canto sacramental.

Caerán sobre el suelo
Y regresarán a la tierra sin duelo.

Proveen el sustento a la prole del abuelo
Y abuela natural.

 

Y yo, un testigo de tanto,

Observo este milagro existencial.

Escucho, y oigo un canto
Por una voz infinitesimal:

 

“Este mundo es lo único que te doy.”

Desde el principio hasta hoy
Te lo he entregado libremente.
Pero el uso por humanos

De la esencia que soy
Me ha gastado tanto que estoy

Sufriendo por ti,
Mi querido oyente.”

Me despierto, y vuelto al juicio,

Conozco el nombre de aquel gran orador
De este mundo, nuestro mundo:

Es el Mundo del Amor.

III. The World

Magical is the love
That I feel for the flora,
The fauna, the glory of nature;

How magical!

 

Astonishing colors
That vibrate in the meadow of flowers

Dancing in the rays of the sun.
It is a fantastic temple!

 

The sun... the moon...
How they sparkle in the waters

that reflect their light.
And I, within this cradle,
Stretch out my arms like a cross.

Hear the tone in the breeze:
The applause of the leaves at mass.

They celebrate every poet
In their sacramental song.

They will fall over the ground
And return to the earth without pain.

They provide sustenance

for the progeny of the elders of nature.

 

And I, a witness of so much,

Observe this existential miracle.

I listen, and I hear a song
Sung by an infinitesimal voice:

“This world is the only one I give to you.

From the beginning to now
I have entrusted it to you freely.
But the use by humans

Of the essence that I am

Has cost me so much
That I am suffering from you,

My dear listener.”

 

I awaken, and returned to my senses,

I know the name of that great orator

Of this world, our world:
It is the World of Love.

Only One

Voila! Hurrah! Ta da!
Here is a formula—
Foolproof even for the rookiest baking rookie—

For making the perfect chocolate chip cookie.

 

Before you proceed,
These are the ingredients you need:

 

Butter—8 tablespoons—melted and cooled.

White Sugar—half a cup.
Brown sugar—fourth a cup.
Vanilla—One teaspoon.

Large egg—one.
Flour—one and a half cups.
Baking soda—half a teaspoon.
Salt—one fourth a teaspoon.
Chocolate chips, semisweet—three fourths a cup

 

Now to reach perfection,

Follow each direction Of this recipe—
To a T:

 

Preheat your oven
At three-fifty Fahrenheit,
Beat the butter with the sugars—
Brown and white—
When the mixture's good and creamy
It's just right.
Mix in the egg and vanilla
Until combined,
The salt and baking soda
Aren't far behind.
Add the flour and stir
(Add a little more
If you prefer),
Then press the crumbles and form the dough,

Fold in the chips—and you're good to go.
Roll it into balls and please be neat,
When you place them on the lined baking sheet.

Bake for nine minutes,
And no more than eleven
Eat one—
Only one—
Only one—
Only one—
Only one—
Yes...heaven!
And let the rest cool for half an hour.

(If you've got the willpower.)

Abuelita's Tortillas

The wind, chilling wind scorches my iced nose
The snow! blistering snow! soaks into my espadrilles
Lefse, the lefse, what is that, only heaven knows

hot dish, tater tot hot dish nothing hot it wills.
I've tried a thousand tortillas in this frigid wasteland

Paper-flats tasting like a trash can! 

The labeled "home-made" tortillas, so tragically bland

my Latin ass can not handle this midwestern Mexican!

Wait, my Grandma said "I'm a MeiCAN, not a MexiCAN'T!"

Channel Abuela, channel Abuela...

"Don't be lazy and make the damn tortillas I taught you, muchacho!"

Grab a comal shake, shake, shake four cups of flour
Sprinkle in the sal
“Ay, mira, m’ijo que super powers!”
This is where I would grab the ajo...

Grandma would smack my manitos,
“The baking powers, pendejo,

Ay, I need to check the frijolitos!
M'ijo! Let's dance way to a bachata!"

 

Shake the flour, salt your bote

cut the four tablespoons of lard
or for the vegans, or dairy avoidant, coconut oil, ole!

 

"Es que... I don't understand... vegan? 

... tan loco!"
 

Knead the dough to a light firm,

enough to knock out cousin Paul,
enough to bounce off Tia’s perm!
When you’re vive cousin Paul form the dough into a three inch ball
Roll round glass half a pinky thick
Turn and roll
To and fro
This takes practice you fly chick
they taste just as good when shaped like Idaho!
Abuela said lay gently on the comal
Watch it brown like your beautiful skin

 

they taste better with green chile
they taste better with pinto beans
they taste better with familial guilt
they taste better with,
you should serve them with,
Abuela said they are the best... when made with love!

Miso Salmon

find all of the ingredients
tablespoons, and teaspoons
miso, sake, and mirin
soy sauce and sesame oil


2 tablespoons of miso
the smell reminds me of helping you measure out
1 tablespoon each of sake, and mirin
1 tablespoon of soy


mix miso, sake, mirin, soy sauce
sesame oil, quarter teaspoon
“it’s not that hard, you see”
that’s what you told me


pour into a ziplock with the salmon fillets
marinate for an hour, while I wait

 

I’ve heard that salmon return to where they spawned
traveling thousands of miles from where they were born,
to the ocean, and back.
how do they know where to go?
what does home mean to a salmon?

 

what does home mean for me?
there’s the home I knew as a child
the place where I live now
and all those who love me
but these are no longer under one roof as they once were

 

how do I find a way to create home for myself?
if only my journey to home was as simple
as the salmon who return

 

turn on the oven to bake at 425
bake the fish for ten to twelve minutes
watching as the surface warms and starts to sizzle

 

I remember the heat of the kitchen
and the care you taught me in preparing this meal
I carry you within me
maybe home is this feeling of being cared for

 

as I make the rice and garnish, sesame seeds and scallions
I try to put care into preparing this, for us, here
in creating home for you, for us,
I feel myself returning

Salpicón de Res

Welcome, welcome.
I’m so happy that you’re here!
Please, have a seat.
You hungry? I hope so!
This recipe is very dear to our home

And it's such a treat.
With splashes of color,
And flavors to savor;
A celebration in every bite you eat. 

Made up of a hodge podge of pieces

una mezcolanza feliz es (it's a happy hodgepodge)

It is perfect for a hot summer day.

You are gonna love it, I know so!

Wait until you try it, sabroso! (delicious!)

Mande? (What?) I didn't say what we're making today?

Ay, perdón. (Ah, pardon)

Salpicón de Res!


Watch closely, I’m gonna show you how it’s done.

Don’t worry too much about measurements.

Use your eyes, your sense of smell, your gut, just like our abuelas
(grandmothers) taught us to use in the kitchen...
...that’s why they call them “grams.”


Start with beef.
Res is beef.
Get yourself a nice heavy cheap cut of beef.
Put it in a pot of cold water and add onion powder
And garlic, some salt and bay leaf.

 

If you don’t have onion powder, use a slice of onion; or garlic powder instead of garlic.
No bay leaf? Forget about it! Flavor it as you will.

Put the lid on the pot
Bring the heat to ‘hot’
Heat it ‘til the water is starting to roar
Boil 15 minutes or so, turn it down to medium low
And simmer for 4 hours more.

Ahora, agarra las papas. (Now, grab the potatoes.)
Potatoes!
No se confunde papa con papá (Don’t confuse [the word]“potato” with “dad”)
Aunque los dos tienen ojos (Although both have eyes)
Uno tiene hijos (One has children)
Y no debe ser cocido (And shouldn’t be cooked up)
Ay, por Dios! (Ah, for goodness’ sake!)

Scrub all your papas
Place in cold water
A bit of salt goes a long way
Bring to a boil

Cook until tender
And while we wait, I like to hear the music play...

 

Oh, he is so talented!

After 15 minutes, about
You can pull the papas back out
Use a light touch, suavemente (gently)
Cuz they might be hot...
...Ay, caliente! (Ah, hot!)
Let’s set them aside to cool.

Tomate y cebolla (Tomato and onion)
Hay siempre en la cocina Mexicana (Are always in the Mexican kitchen)
Slice them both up thinly, muy delgado (very thin)
Keep them separated, separado (separated)
Put them aside into bowls, mira, al lado (look, to the side)
Almost finished, casi terminado (almost finished)
Now do the same to your papas
Don’t you forget about them.
You’re gonna slice up your papas
And set aside once again.
Now pour a little balsamic vinaigrette
Over the top of the papas, cebolla, y tomate,
And then you give them a shake.
Cover with plastic and let the flavors set.
Stick in the fridge,

And we take a short break
'Cuz I'm beat.
Let's get off our feet
And have a seat.

The best part of cooking for a group
Is all the love you can pour into it:
The smell, the sight, the taste of it
Pulls others into the sphere
Of your story.

When I cook
You are tasting my own mother’s food
And scenes of my childhood
Reappear from a long distant repast.
While I cook
You can see the love of my home
Packed into the gesture of a meal.
And, through it's remembrance, 

Through the act of cooking,

You will see there is plenty to go around.
Regresa al res...Ha!
Back to the beef!

After those 4 hours
The beef should be tender
And pull apart easily.
Drain it and...
Ay! Caliente!...
Let it cool.

 

While it’s cooling,
Get a large platter ready;
The larger the better.
This is all about presentation!

 

Now, take your chopped lettuce
And spread it all around the platter.
Ahora (Now


With a fork shred the beef.
Put it in a bowl so it fits nice and neat.
Then you add a little balsamic - don’t be economic -
Balsamic’s what makes it complete.

Now the papas y tomate
Dance around the edge

La cebolla, feeling jealous,
Joins them on the ledge.
Avocado, slice it thinly,
So it fits right in.
Sitting proudly 

With the others,
Let the dance begin!

My stomach is rumbling!
Adelante, (onward)
We arrange the beef,

Not in a mound,
But spread evenly across.
Add the olives or jalapeños -
If you like spicy or not
And then we add cheese...
Parmesan!
Because we like cheese.

And there you have
Salpicón de Res!
Like my mother made.
Enough to feed all the family.
Salpicón de Res
See how prettily displayed
Is our gesture of hospitality.

 

Now for the best part
You get the head start
To sample this work of art...

 

Mmmmm,
Perfection, first-rate!
Come, grab a plate,
Let’s gather around
To enjoy all the sounds
Of the laughter and eating
And everyone competing
To grab what is left
When your plate is bereft
Of this beautiful mess
That is...
...Salpicón de Res!

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This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

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