Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Poet's Movement Against Mexico's Drug Violence: Javier Sicilia's "Hasta La Madre" Movement

Juan Gelman writes in his poem Confidances:
 
he sits down at the table and writes
“with this poem you won’t take power” he says
“with these verses you won’t make the Revolution” he says
“nor with thousands of verses will you make the Revolution” he says
what’s more: those verses won’t make
peons teachers woodcutters live better
eat better or him himself eat live better
nor will they make a girl fall in love with him
they won’t earn him money
they won’t get him into movies free
he can’t buy clothes with them
or trade them for wine or tobacco
no scarves no parrots no boats
no bulls no umbrellas can he get for them
they will not keep him dry in the rain
nor get him grace or forgiveness
“with this poem you won’t take power” he says
“with these verses you won’t make the Revolution” he says
“nor with thousands of verses will you make the Revolution” he says
he sits down at the table and writes

And in the spirit of this poem, Javier Sicilia--Mexican poet who earlier this year had his son tortured and added to the anonymous and growing list of 50,000 dead Mexicans in this the 6th year of President Calderon's War on Drugs--sits down and writes and continues the revolution against the mad logic of violence drenching Mexico in a wave of blood. His "Hasta La Madre Movement" is currently profiled in this article by The Time:


Why I Protest: Javier Sicilia of Mexico

 

When Javier Sicilia's 24-year-old son, health administration student Juan Francisco, was brutally killed by drug traffickers in March, it was headline-grabbing news because Sicilia, 55, is one of Mexico's best known authors and poets. But the tragedy made Sicilia realize how all too anonymous most of the 50,000 victims of Mexico's bloody drug war have been. Believing that President Felipe Calderón's five-year-long military campaign against Mexico's narco-cartels has simply exacerbated the violence, he created the Movement for Peace With Justice and Dignity — which is informally and popularly called Hasta la Madre! or Fed Up! — to push for a stop to the mafia bloodshed and for new anti-crime strategies and reforms. The ranks of its rallies and marches quickly grew from the hundreds to the hundreds of thousands, culminating in a June caravan through a dozen cities, where families held up pictures of slain relatives. By giving names, faces and voices to Mexico's drug-war dead, Sicilia helped prod Calderón to a conference at Mexico City's Chapúltepec Castle over the summer to discuss the kind of modern judicial institutions and social investment that Mexico's political class has too long ignored — but which may be the only way to end Mexico's narco-nightmare.

 

 

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE.
FOR MORE GELMAN CLICK HERE.


 

 

 

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