This Is a Prayer to Santa Muerte; This Is a Prayer to Saint Death.

fdd343f1ce2d0af28ce11e56d2fa1813

This is a prayer to Santa Muerte; this is a prayer to Saint Death.
This is a prayer to the Skinny Lady; this is a prayer to Saint Death.
This is a prayer to La Madrina; this is a prayer to Saint Death.
This is a prayer to Mictecacihuatl’s Daughter; this is a prayer to Saint Death.
This is a prayer contra la migra, terror, and ICE; this is a prayer to Saint Death.
***
In the light of Her candle, I pour rum.   In the light of Her candle, I place flowers.
In the light of Her candle, I offer candies, and coins, and bright-colored cloth.
***
She comes as She always comes:  with a rattle of bones.
She comes as She always comes: with the scent of sun-warmed sand.
She comes as She always comes: with the taste of dust and brack water.
***
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
They are rounding up mothers.  They wait outside schools.  They come into restaurants.  They surround lettuce fields.
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
They tear up our papers.  They lie to our lawyers.  They grab the abeulas.  They carry big guns.
 
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
You have a scythe.  You have a globe.
Use your globe, Lady, I pray, to confuse them about where we are.
My Lady holds up Her scythe.  By its very long handle, She holds up Her scythe.
My Lady cuts the silver thread between Then and Now.
With Her long-handled scythe, My Lady points to Then and Now.
“Then, you were timid,” She says.  “Now, you will fight.”
 
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
They call it an “enforcement surge,” but, Lady, it is terror.
They say they arrest “bad hombres,” but, Lady, they take il jardinero from the public park.
They say “target rich environments,” but, Lady, they come for the Sanctuary Cities.
They say “freedom, freedom,” but, Lady, at their borders, they search through our phones.
 
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
You have scales.  You have an oil lamp.  Use your oil lamp, Lady, I pray, to light the way for those who escape to el Norte.
My Lady holds up Her scales.  High above Her head, my Lady holds Her Scales.  “I will be in the courts,” She says.  “There, you will find me.  Make the judges learn Spanish.”
 
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
In their private prisons, our leases expire, our gardens turn to weeds.
In their private prisons, our women and boys are abused and our old men become sick.
In their private prisons, we are hidden from view, our families are fractured, our lives end in pain.
 
Señora de las Sombras, I cry.
You have a wise owl.  You have an hourglass.
Use your hourglass, Lady, I pray, to help us above and below.
My Lady holds up Her owl.  On Her left wrist, My Lady holds up Her owl.
“Ir a Spider Woman,” She says to Her owl.
“Ir a Guadalupe,” She cries to Her owl.
“Ir a Coyote,” She whispers to her owl,
“And We Three will bring desert storms such as la migra has never seen.”
My Lady says:
 
I am Santa Muerte; I am Saint Death.
I am the Skinny Lady; I am Saint Death.
I am La Madrina; I am Saint Death.
I am Mictecacihuatl’s Daughter; I am Saint Death.
I am protection from la migra, terror and ICE; I am Saint Death.
You know what to do.
****
Picture found here.
Advertisements

8 responses to “This Is a Prayer to Santa Muerte; This Is a Prayer to Saint Death.

  1. Wow. WOW! W O W!!!

    This is so powerful – I’ve read it twice already and saved it for I know I’ll be reading it again. Thank you for the words, the visuals, the feelings. I think that the following words may describe many more of us than is expected by those attempting to take over our Earth…

    With Her long-handled scythe, My Lady points to Then and Now.
    “Then, you were timid,” She says. “Now, you will fight.”

  2. PS – when reading about Santa Muerte some years ago, I remembered this image entitled Tonantzin Renace. It’s of a mural in the Mission District of San Francisco and it is an image that speaks deeply to me. I like to remember this image and that of Santa Muerte together.

    Perhaps you have seen the mural on one of your trips to the Bay Area?

  3. Om Krīṃ Kālikaye Namah,
    Om Kapālinaye Namah!

    Mahakali, Great Lady of Time and Death, your garland is in need of more demon heads.

  4. Mary Jane Tenerelli

    Hello, I am putting together an evening of resistance poetry for a show in Northport, NY in April. I would love, with your permission, to have this poem read from the stage. You would be credited of course. My email address is mjtenerelli @hotmail.com.

  5. This helps. You help. Thank you.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s