I know emotional labor. Though we perfect it, it is not a trait exclusive to women, nor do all women possess the capacity for it. I watched my brother die from fucking emotional labor! I have watched men mother more effectively than some women. If we are to eradicate patriarchy, we must stop appropriating and wielding patriarchal weapons in our fight.
The colony was formerly on life support with enough real estate, restaurants, casinos and electric lights to mask its reality. It was kept breathing by a machine so that when the lights went out, it would signal the end. The lights have been out for 7 months.
Most moments of my day I’m trying to figure out a plan to acquire my own piece of land, to make my lifestyle completely sustainable, to embody the liberation that I strive to practice daily until we can acquire it fully. But sometimes the spirit needs to stop and look at the photos. Honor the moments, the memories, the lessons.
The art of darkness is the spreading of invincibility like smoke rising from el fogón. In essence, like celestial bodies in outer space, darkness cultivates visibility, which would make it not a tool of, but a weapon against colonialism.
These two spirits "con la tea en la mano," light up what needs to be lit up, torch what needs to be torched. They are the guerrilla goddesses Frida Kahlo and Julia de Burgos. They are my muses, my guides. I follow them wherever they take me. I was not allowed to paint them till... Continue Reading →
Charco-crossers like myself arrive at a space where we feel divided: our bodies on one side, hearts and spirits in another. Our home on one side, work on the other. Many of us have either lived on each side or travel and work extensively on both sides. Others adhere to one side only, adopting and... Continue Reading →
We leave lands but cannot take the remains of our lost loved ones with us. We leave the monuments behind but bring the memories with us. My son who carries his name, also carries my brother's same birth mark on the bridge of his nose. I said goodbye to all of his Ozone Park and... Continue Reading →
"...you be colonial man You done be slave man before They done release you now But you never release yourself" -lyrics from "Colonial Mentality" by Nigerian musician Fela Anikulapo Kuti My people are yet to be released. We are three times colonized: by Spain, by the United States and by our own selves. Colonialism is... Continue Reading →
On January 6th, Three Kings Day here in Puerto Rico, I received a gift via email. It was an invitation from Occupy Museums to participate in their Debt Fair Project, a collective installation as part of the 2017 Whitney Biennial. 10 of us were invited specifically to represent the case of the debt crisis in... Continue Reading →
July 25th 1998 marked the centennial of the US military occupation of Puerto Rico, taken as war booty from the US' "splendid little war" against Spain. The year prior to the centennial date, I was graduating from the university and looking for a job. With such a significant date approaching, I sought an opportunity where... Continue Reading →
Yo creo en muchas cosas que no he visto y ustedes también, lo sé No se puede negar la existencia de algo palpado por más etereo que sea no hace falta exhibir una prueba de decencia de aquello que es tan verdadero el unico gesto es creer o no. algunas veces hasta creer llorando se... Continue Reading →
Last month, March 2017, I visited New York City for the first time since moving to Puerto Rico almost three years ago. In a separate post I can share some of the warm, fuzzy thoughts I experienced upon arriving. But what I'm sharing today instead are thoughts taken from my journal on the day before... Continue Reading →
March 2, 2017, marked the 100 anniversary of the Jones/ Shafroth Act signed by US President Woodrow Wilson. It imposed a second class US citizenship on Puerto Ricans. Second class because although they were made citizens, Puerto Ricans would not be able to participate in presidential elections. Immediately after the signing of the act, the... Continue Reading →
The vast expanse of charco that separates you from your loved ones dissipates in the glow of parranda lights. They serpentine through las carreteras del valle del pueblo de Moca and up this hill. The sound of sadness is swallowed by sirens that guide aguinaldo asaltos blaring music and song from barrio to barrio. Your... Continue Reading →
Saturday, August 20th, 2016 marked my 3rd birthday in Borikén. Yeah I write this in October, two months after that birthday. Island time is not about clocks. It is about pausing to process everything along the way. It is about pausing to greet passersby, the ones you know and the ones you don't know.... Continue Reading →