Vox Populi

Vox Populi: A Public Sphere for Politics and Poetry

Jose Padua: A Brief Note on the Effect of Pig’s Blood on the Migration of Souls

At a rally in North Charleston, South Carolina, in February, 2016, fascist/racist presidential candidate Donald Trump repeated the apocryphal story that in the Philippines, more than a century ago, Gen. John Pershing “took 50 bullets, and he dipped them in pigs’ blood,” and shot 49 Muslim rebels. To “the 50th person, he said, ‘You go back to your people, and you tell them what happened.’ And for 25 years, there wasn’t a problem.” The words below are meant to say, in effect, that for Donald Trump and his supporters, their problems are just beginning.

Islands are in
my blood
if not my bones
which grew here
while the color
that flows in them
came down
through the centuries
to meet me on
solid land
where I wait.
I could feel the breeze
and the rain
both through
and in
my skin,
could celebrate
the days
without a lesson,
but was
taught from
humble beginnings
how to stand.

Copyright 2016 Jose Padua

route522truck_dec10_2015_dsc_8154_bw

Photograph by Jose Padua

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