The Writings of Gabriela Garcia Medina

December 5, 2008

The Gift.

Filed under: Poetry — Tags: , , , , , , , , — gabriela @ 5:53 pm

The Gift.

Life is a timba song
And it’s heart is the clave.
Clap – Clap- Clap - ClapClap
The clave;
It beats strong
And it beats steady throughout the song
Steady and conscious of itself
For it is the foundation
It is essential to the music
The root that holds everything together
Without it, nothing else makes sense
We are the claves
Clap-Clap-Clap- ClapClap
Our mothers are the claves
Clap-Clap-Clap- ClapClap
Our fathers are the claves
Clap – Clap – Clap – ClapClap
This beat is the gift of our ancestors
It is our birthmark
Branded onto our hips like tattoos
We carry the clave in our bones
And speak, like we move, in rhythm
Everywhere there is breath, there is salsa
You can find our music
Behind barrio alleys
On Hialeah street corners
In Brooklyn basements
Zabumba on Sundays
Santeria celebrations
Little cousin’s quinceaneras
And family reunions
Yes our music is everywhere we are.
There are Rueda classes in Chicago,
Cuban Festivals in Montana,
And of course there is always a reason to party in Little Havana
We have left our legacy in Alaska, Mexico, Canada, Beijing, Peru
And I bet even the esquimos in Antarctica know how to shake it inside their igloos
Our music has come full circle in Africa,
where it pays homage to its origins and rejoices its evolution
You can also find it at any Arcade in the form of Dance Revolution
It is shared in Indian Reservations, and in Tokyo night clubs,
There are even residues of our flavor in Germany, Britain, France and Spain
Through the sounds of maracas; yes, they too share a part of us, (Well, at least they try!)
Because Cubans, like our music, have touched every corner of the world
We are ambassadors of the drum and representatives of peace
Wherever the clave is, there is a celebration
So tell the UN that all they need to do to bring world peace is cancel the Geneva Convention and hold a Timba Pary instead
Teach Afghanis and Pakistanis to dance a Rueda
Make Israelis and Palestinians have to dance together
North Korea and South Korea will tap their feet
To the same salsa beat
And realize how similar they really are
And when the congas play to the trumpet sound
Walls will come down and bright colored streamers will fly high in the sky
Children from warring countries will look into each other’s eyes
And dance to the Clap-Clap-Clap- ClapClap
We will all dance our wars away
Russia and Georgia will share an enchufle
China will give Tibet a sombrero
And US Troops will do an Adios with Iraq
Because when two strangers are engaged in this musical exchange
They are connected, feet moving together
Hands touching, bodies flowing, souls glowing,
And hearts overcome with compassion
And how can there be wars when there is compassion?
How can we look into each others eyes and not find love?
So let our music be our contribution
Let this Clap-Clap-Clap- ClapClap be our gift
Wherever the congas beat there is my culture sharing itself with the world
Bringing love straight to your doorstep,
Instead of guns, drums shake the earth beneath your feet like an electric beam of light sending little shocks of joy through your blood stream.
Instead of bombs, we drop beats that make even the stiffest of hips move to the groove of the base, creating one people, one love, one race
Our music is everything
It is not a reminder of home, because music is our home
Clap- clap- clap- clapclap
Clapping its way into our yesterdays
And influencing the sounds of tomorrows
As Celia reminds us “Que la vida es un Carnaval”
And this becomes our philosophy
We learn to live like we dance, smiling at the joy that is life
Timba, salsa, son
tropetas, congas y cajon
Yes!
She, too, is a gift to me,
Her spirit resonates in all my poetry
And her rhythm resides within me
Flowing skirt
And dancing shoes
Toes vibrating inside stilettos
Mouth singing
Arms swinging
Fluterring like tropical butterflies
Sweat drips on shaking hips
And lips smile uncontrollably
Cause when I am dancing I am Queen
No scratch that, I am Goddess
No scratch that, I am Queen Goddess!
Exuding sexuality with every contraction
With every release
I release sensuality
Like I was drenched in honey
And men, like bees stick to my sweaty sweetness till their legs fall off
Cause when I am dancing
I forget my insecurities, my fears
I forget that I haven’t set foot on Cuban soil in years
I forget that there’s bills waiting for me at home
That my mother was angry when we last spoke on the phone
I forget that I have an overdue parking ticket,
That there is work on Monday morning
There’s always traffic on the 110
And that gas is $3.99 a gallon
When I am dancing
I am living for the moment
For this music
The next step
The next turn
Who knows how the song will end?
All I know is that my smile is so bright in this moment it could light up a city
After each and every song, my body is ready to collapse in exstasy, like that feeling of release you get right after the best orgasm of your life.
I wanna kiss my sweaty stranger of a partner and say Thank you Thank You Thank you!
Yo don’t know how much this meant to me!
And my breath is so sweet it smells like evaporated sugar canes
My cheeks are so red they burn with love
My eyes so big they are filled with compassion
And my life has meaning
Because as long as I have this gift,
this music,
I will always know who I am
And the world will be my dancefloor.
Clap-Clap-Clap- ClapClap

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