To live liberation when the colonizers have long been experts at inflicting death and we the colonized have long been experts in dying. Embodying the archipelago is taking into our bodies and becoming the very transcendent expanse that this network of islands, water and wisdom have long been…. Embodying the archipelago, I become ungovernable, autonomous in my own essence.
Pero si miras debajo de la superficie, hay unos cielos submarinos donde nuestros antepasados lucen resplandecientes. Brillan una luz eterna. Al igual que la nuestra cuando nos levantamos en protesta con el fuego de la justicia que arde brillante dentro de nuestros pulmones y corazones, respirando luz y amor de vuelta a la existencia./
But if you look beneath the dark surface, there is an underwater heaven with our ancestors aglow. Their light has long shined bright. As does ours each time we rise in protest with the fire of justice burning bright inside our lungs and hearts, breathing light and love back into existence.
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 →
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 →
It happens at random, unexpected, un-welcomed times. It happens with flashes of images, of sites, of memories imprinted in your mind. Flash of a desolate Atlantic Avenue heading into Jamaica, Queens. Flash of bunnies hopping over ancestral graves in Cypress Hills cemetery where Schomburg, Houdini and your whole departed family are buried. Flash of the... Continue Reading →
I took a break from this blog… because deadlines happen; because other projects happen; because life happens; because sometimes you lose light and water. Here, we have an agreement. All work/ art/ architecture related deadlines coming through this home/ office/ studio space are to be completed the day before or earlier. We must allow at... Continue Reading →
Worth Her Weight in Gold. Her as in Boricua, Olympic Gold Medalist Monica Puig. Her as in this goddess land of Borikén. This title, an expression dating back to roman times, used for centuries by the British, known to me as the title of a song by the reggae band, Steel Pulse. Last night as... Continue Reading →
Every migration has its push and pull factors. The current Puerto Rican migration narrative mostly speaks of a colonial fiscal crisis pushing people in droves to US cities in search of jobs and opportunities. My maternal grandparents were part of the last mass migration. They crossed el charco from Ponce to East Harlem in 1950.... Continue Reading →
It has taken me two years to do this. Two years to begin the process of opening up, sharing very intimate rants, reflections and revelations about my time here, my repatriation of Borikén. We arrived on May 15, 2014 from New York City-- my husband, a colombiano born and raised in Queens; myself, a boricua... Continue Reading →