Two Poems Read by Ekiwah Adler-Belendez

by    /  May 15, 2017  / Comments Off on Two Poems Read by Ekiwah Adler-Belendez

Ekiwah Adler-Belendez’s name means “warrior” in Purépucha, an indigenous language of Mexico. Such a name is fitting for the Mexican-American poet who has learned to embrace the challenges and gifts of being born with Cerebral Palsy and living life in a wheelchair. He is the author of five collections of poetry in both Spanish and English. His most recent collection, Love on Wheels, deals with the complexities and richness of life in a wheelchair.

Alder-Belendez visited City of Asylum in September 2016 to share his poetry as a part of the first annual Jazz Poetry Month.

The Palm Reader

These lines
across my open upturned hand–seem

to do absolutely nothing.

But I watch how the small marks
that ring the summit of my face
fingers
trickle down through even thinner
rivulets of wrinkles
to turn into the widening noiseless
streams of my palm.

Certain lines
plummet way past the edges of my
bones
and converge in a whirlpool of
nearly endless space
where their flowing–remains
invisible.

Yet as I wait
I can hear and see them this time
rushing out of me
and past me again

these lines from my hand
that I type and sound out now
through the channel of my hand
opened mouth
and spiraling fingertips.

Ekiwah, don’t waste more time
trying to read your future
Praise the lines that keep going
until you can no longer see them

The Disappeared

(Los desaparecidos)

When we make love
We offer ourselves to the possibility
Of disappearing.

We disappear
As the dawn that vanishes
Inside itself.

The way wave and sand fade
on the rim of each others lips
to abandon themselves in dancing.

When we make love
we cast off–the small habits
that harden us. The certainty of
night and day
and disappear into a you and I lit
up
by our perpetual dreaming.

Later, days or months or minutes
later
We reappear again–with more
features in our face
More fur in our hair. More time
inside our hours.

It’s time again to clean last night’s coffee cups.
Clean again
Our words and deeds. Turn the flame down low
so the soup won’t spoil.

Or maybe loving is more simple
than all of that.
A flame that does not falter
because faith itself
Is the fire that renews it as it
weakens.

But the dictator rapes and kills
the lovers of the world
because perhaps he has forgotten
how to disappear. In brute envy he
tries
to eliminate what is not
the cruel parody
of himself.

About the Author

Sampsonia Way is an online magazine sponsored by City of Asylum/Pittsburgh that seeks to protect and advocate for writers who may be endangered, to educate the public about threats to writers and literary expression, and to create a community in which endangered writers thrive and literary culture is a valued part of life.

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Fearless, Ink.