Monday, February 27, 2012

After Javier O. Huerta's Undocumented Poems: A Poetics of Rebuttal


@ Notre Dame this week:

It is with regret that we write to inform you of two deplorable incidents of racial harassment in recent days. Within a span of a week, fried chicken parts were placed in the mailboxes of the Black Students Association and the African Students Association in LaFortune Student Center.

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As I search for a method of rebuttal to these happenings on campus and in the world at large I am reminded of Javier O. Huerta’s series of blog posts titled undocumented poems over at his Unitedstatesean Notes.

In keeping up with this tradition I offer you here the poem Lynch by Nicolas Guillen from his collection El Gran Zoo (1972).

Lynch
(Trans. Robert Márquez)

Lynch of Alabama.
Tail in the form of a lash
and tertiary hooves.
Usually appears
with a great flaming cross.
Feeds on Negros, ropes,
fire, blood, nails ,
tar.

            Captured
at a hanging. Male.
Castrated.