Posts Tagged ‘photo’

©Angelo J. Sandoval
   9.14.2014

Part I

Nestled in a reconcito,
I have seen you in the corner
of my eye as I have
driven by your
humble exterior.

I didn’t pay much attention
to your presence,
but the few times I did catch
a glimpse of you,
I wondered if you were
offering sacred prayer space,
yet didn’t bother to find out.

I heard from news sources
you had been violated.
Your sacred space,
treated with disrespect.
Your heart was taken from you.
Ancient relics that carried
prayers of antepasados
stolen from the sacredness

©9.14.2014

Part II

My heart broke into pieces
as I read the news of your torment
You, the heart of a community
the refuge of the lonely
Violated by one of your
sons or
daughters

The heart that is You,
was taken,
taken to unknown places
Lost to the cycle of addiction
that plagues your community
The same community that cares
for you,
that made every effort to protect you.

My heart is broken.
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Angelo J. Sandoval
©8.30.14

The search for indeginous
identity roots
My journey has been
full of adventure.
I search the spiritual
en mi querido Norté.

I traveled to Alcatraz Island,
celebrating sunrise ceremonies
antepasados making there
presence known
as Father Sun breaks over the horizon,
Grandmother Moon slowly begins
her decent in to the ocean’s horizon.

The beauty of the Morning Star
Came to bless us with love prayer
trails to the ancestors in the other world.

I search for a story which has been
lost to the winds of time.
names of sacred spaces unknown
Spanish corrupted names
leave my mind wondering
wondering where
where did they go?
Why did they go?
No answers.

Adventure seeks me out
Visiting ancient ruins
of a forgotten city.

Lost to the winds of time
reasons why,
why an ancient city was left behind.
I found peace at the ruins site.

For once the unknown
became, ok.
I came to a place labelled, ruins.

Narrated videos of dependents
of ancient people remind us,
These spaces are not ruins,
they are home to ancestor spirits.

I enter sacred space, the Great Kiva.
The energy of ancient peoples are
ever present,
I make two visits in to this sacred space.
I close my eyes and daydream of lost
Alto Huachín Kiva,
lost sacred space
lost stories of creation, love, family, and the beyond.

One more piece of the puzzle found,
yet it doesn’t find its fitted place in my
people’s lost history.

Sacred space, the Great Kiva
your gift of sacred space will
live in my heart till the end of my days.
Entering your sacred space without
the need of a card to prove my lost
indigenous identity,
Your sacred space gave healing
to a lost soul.

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The photo were taken at Aztec Ruins National Park in Aztec, New Mexico.

©Angelo J. Sandoval
9.3.2014

I look toward the New Mexico sky,
the heavens above
sun sets approach the day
evening sets in,
the clouds, fire red
turning bright orange as the sun sets.

The clouds, silent
as the day passes
the clouds witness the
beauty that is New Mexico
and the ugliness, just the same

These silent clouds hold in them
the secrets of negativity,
the load voices of a people from an Enchanted Land.

These silent clouds
burn with the Sun’s rays
as Father Sun
makes his way behind the
Jemez Mountains.

These silent clouds
keep secrets hidden
in their soft fluffy woolly body
the secrets of enchanted dreams
and repulsive nightmares

These silent clouds
protect word of
prayers uttered by
enchanted hearts and souls
the clouds silence has
no room for judgment
only a healing presence.

The glow of fire sun as it sets
The clouds take your words with them
as they fade in the night sky

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Let us meet this month’s Speak, Poet feature, Rich Boucher. Rich is a contributor the 2nd Anniversary blog post Reflecting on the 2 year anniversary of Speak, Poet and a contributing Poet to my anthology,  “Palabras O Muerte: Vivan Los Escritores”.

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A past member of five national poetry slam teams (Worcester, Mass. (x2), Washington, D.C., Wilmington, Del. and Albuquerque, N.M.), Rich has published four chapbooks of poetry and for seven years hosted an open reading and slam in Newark, Delaware. Since moving to Albuquerque in March of 2008, Rich has been performing and writing steadily in the Duke City, and is a regular contributor/editor at localpoetsguild.wordpress.com. In 2012 Rich was named to the first inaugural Albuquerque Poet Laureate Selection Committee for a two-year term, and his participation helped to select Hakim Bellamy, the City of Albuquerque’s first official Poet Laureate. Rich’s poems have appeared in Artistica, Red Fez, Adobe Walls: An Anthology of New Mexico Poetry, Apeiron Review, Boston Poetry Magazine, Brawler, The Bicycle Review, The Camel Saloon, CARNIVAL, Citizens for Decent Literature, Crack the Spine, Dead Beats, Delaware Poetry Review, Epigraph, Eunoia Review, Extract(s), Fickle Muses, Grey Sparrow Journal, HyperText, The Lake, Leaves of Ink, Lyre Lyre, Neon, The Rag, The Malpais Review, Clutching at Straws, Shot Glass Journal, Missive, Mutant Root, ppigpenn, Poydras Review, quarter after, Sparkbright, The Subterranean Quarterly, The Mas Tequila Review, The Yellow Ham, Visceral Uterus, Borderline, 200NewMexicoPoems,The Legendary and The Nervous Breakdown. In January of 2012, Rich appeared on the album, “Dylan – Philadelphia pays tribute to a Legend”, an album featuring various Philadelphia artists performing covers of Dylan songs to benefit Amnesty International and the End Hunger Network; Rich’s contribution to the album was a spoken-word rendition of Bob Dylan’s “My Back Pages”. Hear some of his poems at richboucher.bandcamp.com. In March of 2013, Rich’s poem, “In Memory of My Neighbor, Carol, Who Has Not Died Yet” was named one of Brawler’s Best Poems of 2012”. 

Through out my time in school, weather it was high school or collage literature, especially poetry were my least favorite subjects to take. Slowly I began to find poets and poetry that talked about events, people and history that I could identify with, but the list was short. Not many brown poets. The focus in class were on poets such as Robert Frost, Emily Dickenson and Shakespeare to name a few. I wondered where all the Chicano/Mexicano/Indigeno poets were at.

The summer of 2011 I was spending a week in Alburquerque with my new job. I received an invitation by Andrea J. Serrano to a poetry reading, Speak, Poet: Voz, Palabra y Sonido. Amanda and I attended the inaugural reading featuring Cathy Arellano and Ara Cruz. I didn’t know that this reading was going to become a monthly event. Then I received an invitation in July then August and so on an so forth.

Since the first reading in June of 2011 I was standing behind my camera taking photos of all the poets who have come through Speak, Poet. After a few months I realized that I was capturing the faces of poets of all walks of life, from all backgrounds and ethnicities. It was a great thing that was taking shape. At that point I knew I had to make every effort to attend Speak, Poet every month to capture every poet who featured and who stepped up to the Mic-less open mic. Finally, what I was once searching for was becoming a reality. Poets who I could relate too. I knew that this was the beginning of a great thing.

In April of 2012 I started a blog dubbed after the nickname given to me by Andrea Serrano. The nickname was El Razafotografista. I started my blog initially to promote my photography and poetry, but then realized that part of promoting my photography I could promote the poets from New Mexico. I started to take images I had taken at past readings and posting them on my blog and Andrea would allow me to copy and paste biographies of the featured poets. I realized that by creating those blog posts I was creating in cyberspace a corner where youngsters could read about poets who they could identity with. I was beginning to create a collection of faces that were writing words that many of our youth could identify with. My search for Chican@ poets was over. I had found the treasure I had been looking for and now I am sharing this treasure with all of you.

Standing behind the camera waiting for the right moment to push the shutter button, to capture that expression that gives the viewer a glimpse into the emotion the poet was expressing at that moment, as he/she spoke their truth. I has been a honor to have met and photographed many of Nuevo Mexico’s greatest poets and I know there is hidden, talented poets out there I hope to photograph in feature readings at Speak, Poet.

In this blog post I have invited Andrea Serrano, Cathy Arellano, Amanda Salinas, Fernando Lopez, Rich Boucher and Michelle Otero to give a reflection on their thoughts regarding the last two years of Speak, Poet. Here are their reflections and thoughts. I hope you enjoy these heart felt words and the photography that started my endeavor to document and promote as many Nuevo Mexicano Poetas.

GUEST WRITERS

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Logo by: Fernando Lopez

When I was asked to do the logo for Speak Poet I was excited. I wanted to give back to something that meant a lot to me. I remember a friend, and fellow artist of mine and a conversation we had on how the most abundant and significant plant is the corn stalk. At that point I pretty much knew what I wanted to say in the logo. Andrea Serrano our host and founder of Speak Poet mentioned she wanted the Albuquerque’s city’s skyline in the logo. So what I tried to do was make that skyline unmistakable, and giving that our voices are our microphones. I wanted to have the mic bursting out of the corn stalk, representing each of us. Standing strong and radiating behind the city. The task was fun, and it is my hope that I captured a bit of what Speak Poet is.

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Andrea Serrano and Fernando Lopez unveiling the new Speak, Poet Logo.

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Andrea J. Serrano

In June, I canceled Speak, Poet for the first time in two years. My dad had just gotten out of the hospital and we found out that his prognosis wasn’t good. I was exhausted and the thought of hosting an event terrified me. I didn’t think I could handle it and without explanation, I put a simple message on Facebook – and that act alone took a lot of energy. The next month, when I was ordering the cake for the two year celebration, I found myself worrying that no one would show up. What if June’s abrupt cancelation was so offensive that no one would return? What if there was no more Speak, Poet?

I find that I often worry about Speak, Poet. I worry that there won’t be enough food, or that people will be uncomfortable. I worry that the building will be locked and I worry that I will fall down the stairs. I have learned that a small dose of anxiety before an event is normal and when it comes to Speak, Poet, there is no need to worry: the community always shows up
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I never have enough words to describe what a blessing the Speak, Poet family has been in my life. What started out as an experiment has become a cornerstone to my creativity. I know that on the second Thursday of the month, I’ll be doing what I love and I’ll be among friends and family who never cease to amaze me with their words, their courage, their laughter and their presence. I love when someone reads for the first time; I love when Rich Boucher taunts the crowd into shouting “SPEAK, POET!” I love seeing our friends from Northern New Mexico join us each month and I love the sight of looking up and seeing so many genuinely loving faces. The fact that all of this is captured by El Razafotografista means we are capturing a story of community.

We weave stories, create connections and leave with our hearts a little fuller. Speak, poets, and speak loudly.

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Rich Boucher

Together We Will Find the Right Words:
A Reflection on the Second Anniversary
of Speak, Poet: Voz, Palabra y Sonido

I remember that it was a really hot June night, a real slow scorcher. And I remember thinking when I saw the place (El Chante: Casa de Cultura) how many times had I walked right past it and not given it a second look? I remember loving that the reading took place in a HOUSE, a real house with two stories to it and a front porch. It reminded me of the Art House, the little place on Delaware Ave in Newark, Delaware, by the University, where I’d hosted an open mic and slam night for years before I moved to New Mexico. I remember feeling excited to check it out, and very much wanting this night to be a booming success for my friend Andrea Serrano. Andrea and I had grown to be friends and colleagues in the local poetry scene here in Albuquerque, well before the start of this reading, and I was behind her endeavor one hundred percent. I remember my girlfriend Rhiannon and I finding seats and watching the place just fill up. It was obvious from the first night that this place would be packed to the rafters easily and every night. I remember so many strangers’ faces, strangers who through poetry would soon become the friends I’ll be forever grateful for. I remember hearing for the first time a night of poetry where much of it was in Spanish and I remember listening and learning and slowly growing to love the sound of the poetry of New Mexico in the mother tongue of this land.

From that first night, where I debuted my poem “Dark Jade” (my anti-Sushi poem that I was happy to crack Andrea up with) and where I heard the work of Cathy Arellano and Denver’s Ara Cruz, and where I heard and met so many other excellent poets from all over New Mexico, and where I have personally witnessed a poetry reading doing good works for the community (and for individual members of the community), the phenomenon that is Speak, Poet has only grown in strength even as it has had to find a new home. I’m so fortunate to have even been the tiniest cog in this shining wheel. I remember Andrea confiding to me how nervous she was; I remember telling her that I’d been there, that I’d known what it’s like to wonder if anyone will really show up at all. To wonder if this thing has legs, to wonder if it has wings. Well, after tons of excellent features and open readings full of beautiful moments over a span of two years (so far!), there’s no reason to wonder about the future and promise of Speak, Poet anymore; there’s only the next milestone to reach for ahead of us.

Very Gratefully Yours,

Rich Boucher

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Cathy Arellano

Speak, Poet: Voz, Palabra, y Sonido…Y qué ?!

Andrea Serrano had a dream, and every month poets, spokenword performers, filmmakers and photographers, singers and dancers, painters and sculptors, gardeners and farmers, activists, students and teachers, queers, Chicanos with Xs and without, African, Native, and Asian Americans, and more—we gather. Every month our voices, words, and sounds bathe dreams and pierce nightmares.

Many times I’ve craved Speak, Poet. My livingroom, your livingroom, our kitchen, our front porch, our stoop, our circle with the mic-less open mic. Live, up close, in person, and in color. I’ve driven my car holding my breath until poetry–in and out all of its forms–washed over me. Each month community reveals themselves, introduces their families, and brings back their dead. I’ve wanted, needed to share my poetry, my concrete homeland, my queer body, me. And, I—visitor, outsider—have been heard, seen.

Speak, Poet where community says, Y qué to the crooked boss! Y qué to the derelict law! Y qué to the unjust jail! Y qué to the jail-like school! Y qué to the language police! Y qué to all the people that would keep us out, alone, separated, unheard, unseen. The community of Speak, Poet; the community that is Speak, Poet: Incredible. Truly.

Speak, Poet touched me so deeply that I wanted my students to have their minds blown, their consciousness cracked, and their souls soothed. This fall marks the first year anniversary at Central New Mexico Community College of CNM Speaks: Poetry and Spoken Word Open Mic. Yes, I copied. Do you blame me? Each time poets conjure their worlds on campus or a student speaks her or his poetic fact or fiction, or someone says, “I needed that” or “I’m going home to write”—or, they pull out paper and pen and write something on the spot and read it (!), I know the rite is right.

I humbly offer sincere gratitude to Andrea for having the vision and the ovaries for birthing Speak, Poet. And thank you to every member of the Speak, Poet community who sustains it with each breath.

Finally, won’t the poems that have bounced off the mic-less open mic make one helluva anthology?

Y qué! Y punto final!

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Amanda Salinas
Photo used with permission.

Looking back 2yrs at Speak Poet, I think about hearing all the poets and seeing how they stood up there with such confidence. I remember when it was my turn to get up and read my poem, my very first poem writen and performed I was so nervous I’m not sure I read my poem out loud instead I whispered it quickly and promptly got sick outside! Andrea Serrano the creator of Speak Poet encouraged me to write, keep writing, and believed in me enough to have me as a feature for “Voices to listen for” A proud night for me and I still thank Andrea today for the encouragement. Speak Poet has been wonderful and I look forward to driving from Chimayo/Cordova just to see everyone and hear their poetry. Speak Poet has become a place where I feel comfortable enough to share my truth knowing everyone there always has nice things to say a hug or smile to give just when you need it, even if they don’t know it. Andrea Serrano gave me a second chance at featuring a long side JoseLuis Ortiz and all though yet again I was nervous and didn’t quite use my time wisely I didn’t get sick again! It has been an honor to be a part of the Speak Poet family and hope 2yrs leads to many more come!

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Fernando Lopez

I moved to New Mexico in 2009 with a stack of bad break up poems and a mound of past regrets. I was an artist and poetry was just something kind of new to me. Never, would I have considered myself to be a poet or a writer. I couldn’t imagine myself being the type, writing for the sake of writing. How I grew up, such things were unheard of and pointless. The first time I heard anyone speak in that way was in fifth grade when my teacher Ms. Kelly showed us a video of Martin Luther King Jr in his famous “I have a dream speech”. It was then that something sparked in me. His speech would resonate with me, not only for what it meant but for the ferocity in his voice when he said it. I never realized such power existed, that simple words could mean and change so much. The first time I read at Speak Poet I remember a feeling just like that, it was infinite. I felt that I was a part of a revolution of artist and freethinkers standing in the company of one another sharing, peeling themselves to the very core with their words. For the first time, I heard my own voice and even though my hands shook and my voice quivered with every word. I got that same feeling I did when I heard that speech. What I love about Speak Poet is its mixture of seasoned poets (like those in this blog) and we, the people not so seasoned, yet equal, in our love of the word. A thanks to our host Andrea Serrano for giving us a gift, a safe place, a place of camaraderie and community, a place we all can call our home, a home for our words. Even my two younger sisters (teenagers) read for the first time there, I was so proud. Not long ago I got stopped by someone whom I never met before, asking me “hey you’re that poet from Speak Poet right”? And I was like, yeah I’m that poet.

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Michelle Otero

Speak, Poet is Nana’s kitchen after a big meal when your sisters and tíos and cousins and their kids and the neighbors and your niece and the nice güero boyfriend she brought home from college linger around the table and tell stories. Your tío who lost hearing in one ear during the war tells that one you love about the night he and your dad were walking home along the acequia after the dance and came face to face with La Llorona. Mama remembers the mean priest who used to shout, “You did what?!” from the confessional. He once gave her ten rosaries for penance. Your boy cousins take turns telling the time they were wrestling in Nana’s shower and broke her door, and she chased their naked bodies through the hallway and out into the yard.

Someone gets hungry again, and there are burritos and buñuelos and punch in rainbow colors. And it seems there are more people than when you started, and there’s no room to sit, and it’s hot, but everyone wants to be in the kitchen because that is where we are fed.

You remember those who have passed, those who were wounded. Someone pulls out a guitar. And you don’t know how it happens, but before the night ends, your niece, the shy one with the güero boyfriend, is reading something she wrote, and it’s the story of her and all of us, how we come together, how we are fed.

COLLAGES FROM PAST READINGS

Here are some post reading collages of Speak, Poet. The collages aren’t in any particular order. This is part of the Speak, Poet family and community. Thank you to all who have and continue to support this great community event every month.

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If you’re on Facebook please visit the Speak, Poet: Voz, Palabra y Sonido fan page. Also, drop by El Razafotografista and Campana de Esperanza Fotography Fan pages. For biographies of many of the poets whom have featured at Speak, Poet visit the archive of my blog. Like our pages and support great community events and local businesses!

To all of you who have participated in our family and community of Speak, Poet please share your reflections on the comment section of this post.

After a month’s hiatus, Española Poetry Explosion is back. July’s feature is Damien Flores. Join us July 31, 2013 from 6:00-8:30pm. There will becat least two rounds of the open mic. Let me introduce Damien Flores:

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Damien Flores hails from Albuquerque, New Mexico. He received a BA in English and Chicano Studies from the University of New Mexico in 2009 and was recipient of the 2008 Lena Todd Award for creative non-fiction from the UNM English Department. He was named “Poet of the Year” in 2007 & 2008 by the NM Hispano Entertainer’s Association. Flores is best known as a member of the ABQ Poetry Slam Team as well as the two-time National Champion UNM Loboslam teams. He organized the College Unions Poetry Slam in 2008 and is also a four-time ABQSlams City Champion.His published works include: “A Novena of Mud” and “El Cuento de Juana Henrieta,” released by Destructible Heart and Culture Lab Press. His work has appeared in Bomb Magazine, The Daily Lobo, Duke City Fix, and The Underground Guide to Albuquerque. Flores has also been anthologized in Malpais Review, De Veras: Young Voices From the National Hispanic Cultural Center, Earthships: A New Mecca Poetry Anthology, The 2006 National Poetry Slam Anthology, and A Bigger Boat: The Unlikely Success of the Albuquerque Poetry Slam Scene. Damien Flores is currently an educator in Albuquerque and hosts the Spoken Word Hour on 89.9 KUNM-FM.

On Tuesday June 18, 2013 we gathered at El Rincon de Los Trujillo’s, the residence of Pilar Trujillo, Adán Trujillo y familia. In a place and space where ancient wisdom has been passed down for generations. Wisdom that has sustained the people from Chimayo and many other mountain desert communities.

On this 18th day of June 2013 we gathered as community to learn ancient wisdom and knowledge of the people of Central Mexico. We learned about the hidden knowledge within the Aztec Sun Stone/Calendar. Our cosmetic identity and mission on this earth was brought to light by Maestro Mazatzin.

In this post photos of the evening are being shared. I have asked several community members to share a short reflection about the evening’s platica. It was an honor to have been able to document these great gathering.

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This image of the Aztec Sun Stone was taken in 2005. The Stone is at the Museum of Anthropology and History in Mexico City.

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Reflection by Pilar Trujillo:

It’s been quite some time that I’ve taken a deeper interest in learning more about who I am as a spirit in this sometimes ailing and painful body that can be wracked with emotions. I find myself yearning for the wisdom of my ancestros, knowing that for centuries they knew how to live in harmony with the tierra and each other. The Aztec calendar has long been something I’ve wanted to know more about. So when I heard that Maestro Mazatzin Aztekayolokalli was going to give a presentation in Albuquerque about it, I decided to go. But on the morning of the presentation, I didn’t feel well. I wanted to see him, but did not want my chronic health issues to flare up.

I really believe that if we open ourselves up to what Creator wants for us, things fall into place without strain. This was evidenced with how seamlessly the gathering was organized. It started when compadre Jorge García made a comment on compadre Luis Peña’s Facebook post saying that he wanted to bring Mazatzin up to the norte so that all of us could make a connection with him. I immediately offered our land and home for the following evening as a space for a plática. Then Luis offered to help with outreach. Our comadres Annette and Beata offered food. And just like that, the gathering was set. Several other people helped with food, drinks, documentation, setting up, etc. That’s the power of focusing your intentions and actions on a common cause: things get done!

The plática by Mazatzin was amazing. I keep reflecting on what it means to be an instrument of harmony, which is what an Azteca really is. I also learned a lot about myself in a very short amount of time, like how my day sign is Dog/Izkuintli, which gives me a lot of admirable traits, but must be balanced with rest and restoration or else I’m of no use to anyone.

As we wrapped up the evening with Maestro, I couldn’t help but feel like I’ve been waiting for this for a long time. I mentioned this to him as we chatted after the plática. And he agreed. Yes- we have all been waiting for this for a long time: to be re-introduced to who we really are, to our most sacred selves, our cosmic identities. El es Dios!

Reflection by Annette Rodriguez:

Earlier I’d been reading about the trials in Guatemala, where former President Efraín Ríos Montt was convicted of genocide against 1,771 indigenous Mayans. His scorched-earth attacks in the 1980s displaced at least 29,000 Mayans, and were meant to destroy the Ixil communities completely. When the verdict against him was read, the assembled Ixil men, women and children stood and called out to the judges, “¡Tantiuxh!” (“Gracis!/Thank you!”). My spirit was in mourning as I walked toward the gathering with Maestro Mazatlin. I thought of the centuries of loss, of pain, of displacement of our indigenous communities throughout what we now call the Americas. I thought of the distance between us all.

Yet, once across the field, as those I hold dear and those I am destined to hold dear assembled, I found strength as Maestro Mazatlin re-introduced us to our undeniable relationship to one another, and our responsibility to one another. The evening was an invitation to deeper and lasting alliance and affiliation. Rather than a romantic connection to an imagined Aztec past, we were invited to act in our real present. Reminded to recall, in each sacred day, our connection as colonized peoples and to continue the struggle to practice, to understand, and to connect as we always have, as our elders and our people have maintained since time immemorial. I am a daughter of Zacatecas, whose family was displaced to the Arizona and Southern New Mexico copper mines. Across a state-imposed distance, we retain our love of and connection to Juchilipa. I have often felt a cultural divide from Northern New Mexico, but I was deeply moved to be in a space with and created by hermanos y hermanas from Califas, Central México, the Norté, Sandia, Santa Clara, and Zuni Pueblos, and beyond.

As we gathered, Jorge Alberto Garcia Atilano discussed anti-Mexican state policies and social structures, like those we see in Arizona, Texas, and even in our local Whole Foods Markets. And in that moment, I saw that our action of assembling, learning and teaching was an act of resistance—on this evening, this was our shared responsibility. Maestro Mazatlin’s unfolding of histories of conquest and resistance, and his invitation for us all to reflect and act in relation to one another, to our responsibilities granted us by the creator, opened up rich potential for continued dialogue across borders, in the space and time we share.

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On May 17th and 18th El Santuario de Chimayo will be the site of a velacion y ceremonia that comes from Chalma, Estado de Mexico, Mexico. Danzantes from many parts of New Mexico and other parts of the Southwest will come together to honor El Cristo Negro de Chalma. I have been participating with this ceremonia for about 6 or seven years and I have been celebrating with my family for the fourth year. Amanda and I are the pardrinos of the Cendal, which is a cloth decorated with flowers that dresses the cross. This is our second year as padrinos. It has been one of the greatest honors bestowed on my family. As the days come closure to Friday we prepare the Cendal for the velacion y ceremonia. This time of year has similar spiritual gifts as the ones I gain during Cuaresma and Semana Santa. It is a time for spiritual healing, reflection, growth and re-energizing me for one more year of working with the ills that affect my community.

The Danzantes we have met in the past few years have become more they just friends. We have become familia. We have connected with a common spirituality that is difficult to describe with words. It can only be described in that prayer we share and offer for each other. I am also honored that the Danzantes have entrusted me to document this ceremony for them with my photography and I am thankful for the opportunity to learn about it as well. In respecting the sacredness of the ceremonia I don’t share the images I capture except for a couple which are at the end of this text. I believe that it is my obligation and duty as a photographer to respect the sacredness of ceremonia.

Many blessing have come to my little family of four. We have been given the opportunity to participate in a ceremony that has been here since pre-colonialization by Europeans. I am honored to be a part of this wonderful group of people whose heart and soul as huge as the universe. This weekend will be filed with prayer, blessings and great gente coming together in honor El Señor de Chalma y El Señor de Esquipula. Please come and join us in prayer.

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Photos used with permission by the Danzantes. Always keeping in mind that Danza is a sacred ceremony and a prayer. Please respect the photos by not downloading if you are not a danzante or do not have their permission. Thank you for understanding and respecting this sacred tradition.

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Pow Wow
(c) Angelo J. Sandoval
       4-28-13

The beat of the drum
sounds on the streets
of Burque
Indiginous people gather
drum groups create the heart beat
a heart beat
a resilient heart beat
that has continued to beat
though times of
oppression
suppression
genocide attempts
with diseased blankets
cut of feet
trail of tears
battles in Santa Fe
Wonded Knee
reclaiming Alcatraz Island

Today, descendents
of warrior ancestors
gather and dance
colourful regalia
powerful feathers
the sound of chimes
together as one

The heart beat of
Turtle Island
strong as
drum groups
created prayer songs
as dancers offered
prayes with movement
ancestors of these land
honored by descendents,
of enduring Nations

Please keep in mind that Native American Dance is a prayer. I respectful ask that the images in this post not be downloaded for any purpose. Lets remember to respect the sacredness of the dancers prayers.

Tragedy can hit at any moment and any place. A few days ago this tragedy happened on the Chimayo Highway

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Tragedy on 76

(c) Angelo J. Sandoval
      4-21-2013

Highways, freeways, roads
commuters, drivers, passangers
traveling in one direction
or on the other

speed drugs alcohol
lack of attention
to surroundings
split second
crash
two cars headone
cars become flimsy
like aluminum cans
speed the great equalizer
sudden impact
life changing experience
the delicacy of life makes
it self known
human body trapped in crushed cars
child screaming in pain
in fear
fear of what happened to her daddy
man screaming
blood running on streets
unsustecting third car
driver in shock
worried about small child victim

community comes together
in form of volunteer firefighters
emts and off duty nurses
the smell of oil and blood
permiate the air
cries of victims
and there family members
are carried by the wind

organized chaos
injuried transported to hospitals
family following right behind
lights and sirens of ambulances
fire crew to clean up the metal carnage
I fade away to be with my children and girlfriend
Detour takes me by the capillita
al Santo Niño
y oraciones le mando por
todos
all those involved in the crash
victims and family members
may God Bless you
and God bless those who
put there life on hold to save lives.