Mother Mexico

By Bill Frayer



She is a beautiful dama.

Her dark tragic eyes call to us.

Her dark smooth hair flows

Over her face, down her back,

Reminding me of every mother’s love.

Her red lips sing

The songs of the Indio,

Songs of hope, songs of loss.

She lulls me with her stunning beauty,

But her allure hides the pain,

Hides the tears

Hides the bood,

All spilled

Over the murder

Over the pride

Over the cruelty,

Over her lost sons.

For she was young

And full of hope

And her beauty was plundered

And her chastity stolen

By craven men

Who could never embrace

Her native radiance.

She was enslaved and used

In the name of fealty and faith,

But she was left naked

To bake in the sun.

But she was strong.

She survived to love again.

Wrapped in her new colors,

She danced and she sang

Late into the night.

Her sons swore their solemn oath

To stand with her always.

Yet, her sons were proud

And they fought to protect her

And they bled in her name

And they held her up

As innocent as Guadalupe,

But they slay one another

In her name.

And more tears and more blood

Flowed into the dust,

Down from the mountains

And into the hearts

Of all her children.

And now, as the music of the Mariachi

Echoes in her ears,

And the smell of the pork in chili

Saturates the air

The bitter taste of love lost

And promises unkept

Quickens her tongue.

And the tears and blood

Which blur her vision

Drip slowly onto her brown feet,

As she walks slowly

Through her fragrant garden

Under the mango tree

Into her small cocina

To roll the masa,

To burn her fingertips

On the hot griddle

As she makes the tortillas

To sustain her grandchildren,

Who watch her with love

And with fresh eyes, unclouded

By betrayal,

By the sins of man.

And she serves comida

In the cool shadows

As she looks over the garden wall

At the blood red sun.


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