Monday, June 25, 2012

A Poetic Reflection: Cuba – the island where la lucha never ends

Lynsey Sharp is a Butler University student who participated in the May 15-25 travel seminar to Cuba entitled, "Sustainability and the Cuban Revolution."  She shared the below poem with us upon her return to the U.S. 

¡Hasta La Victoria Siempre!

In Havana Santeria priests dance on rooftops,
While farmers wait to exchange vegetables for coins in el Mercado.
Santa Clara boasts “El Mejunje,”
A place to dance, drink, converse,
Or engage in other forms of bonding –
Which may or may not result
In a bruised lip in the morning.
A difficult reality lies in “La Marina,” barrio of Matanzas,
But once understood, unaccustomed eyes will not soon forget
As the choir songs still ring in certain ears
And altars to spirits are the only lavish entities of one’s home,
A spiritual experience unfolds, that is undoubtedly human.
Meanwhile in the lazy waters of Varadero
One could float away
Watching the fish swim beneath one’s feet
And ornaments of starfish decorate the sea floor.
But Cuba, you are much more than this
You are the people of past, present, and tomorrow
You are our dearest friends we’ve met:
Chino – “El Rey” of the road
Who guides us to our destinations safe and sound
And enriches our experience with his knowledge and joy.
Oye Oye Carmen – you are everything
Funny, caring, world-renown singer
A guerrillera against homework
Our Cuban mother.
Betsy – translator extraordinaire, talented dancer
You show us that los jovenes de Cuba, like many youth around the world
Are dedicated to and passionate about their country’s sustainability,
Revolution, and fellow humans’ wellbeing.
Susan – coordinator, keeper of time
Which is difficult to do in Latin America
And also model of kindness, proponent of revolutionary change.
Cuba – the island where la lucha never ends
Because the people know
That to achieve a more beautiful, sustainable life
Should be a goal we never stop fighting for.
¡Hasta La Victoria Siempre!