Journey To Sinaloa

When in the heat I starved for love,
instead I ate plantains.
I learned that love
is not a thing of sex between us. It is
the smiling boy with sweet mango juice
dripping from his innocent chin it is his
his laughing sister running on
the railroad tracks beside.

The plantains were stripped
of their green and red skin. We
put them in a frying pan on the naked beach
and watched the butter burn them brown.
I put one in my mouth too hot and burned
my tongue
a taste of all things not yet known to me.

Various dead cattle were strewn on the tracks.
Mark was horrified at their starvation
and looked away. I saw their multi-colored coats
as prophecy, and behind them
the gravel mountains a calling of God. Oh, this
is a tilted land –
if I love it will it disappear?

I drink a too-sweet Coca-Cola and see the
carcass of a feline on a street in Hermosillo.
I am fascinated by what parts of her flesh
have fouled, and where the flies still eat
Mark turns his head. He does not want
to know,
not then, not any time,
that here is the center of the world. This is
our future, to lie beside this road, to die
in the screaming streets of Mexico
beneath revolutionary slogans
painted on the walls.

Don’t hide beneath me. I desire you no longer
if you do not face truth. Love is truth,
and staring at death. Love is knowing these green mountains
and the blue infinity of this sky. Love
is the plantain burning my face to
remind me that
I am.

Love is a toothless woman begging
with scarred, brown hands. Love is
the abuela washing my hair. Love is
not you.

You are not the center of the world.

Love is the giving of this fruit. Love
is the tasting of this fruit. Love is the staying
in the center in the moment in forever
not not not
looking away
no matter how horrid and certainly
not ever how beautiful.

When in this journey I hungered for God,
instead I counted my fingers.
I learned that God is not a thing of verity between us.
God is the ancient woman collecting pesos for prayers
God is her greedy son watching.

My fingers were raw and stained with nicotine. I put
them in the ancient woman’s hands and watched
our colors clash and blend. She grasped me in a wretched
but solid way –
a touch of things not known yet to me.

Children ran wild about the bus station. Mark was
horrified at their wanting and looked away. I saw their
multi-colored faces as prophecy, and behind them the
lake of scorpions the reflection of the universe.
Oh, this is a tilted land –
if I put it to my lips, will I disappear?

I drink a bitter Corona and see a scorpion boldly walking
across the filthy floor. Mark turns his head.
He does not want to know
not then, not any time
that this is the center of the world. This scorpion is
our future, tenacious against throngs of humanity,
stinging when necessary and sometimes not,
hiding in the dry bed of a Sonoran lake
beneath green and yellow mountains that look false.

Don’t hide beneath me. I will desire you no longer
if you will not face truth. Truth is God and staring
at chaos. God is knowing these green mountains
and the white nothingness of life. God is this woman
squeezing my hand to remind me that
I am.

God is toothless, begging, starving and sad. God is
a fiction to read and remember. God is not you.

You are not the center of the world.

God is the giving of this fruit, god is the tasting
of this fruit. God is
staying in the moment in the center of forever
and not not not
looking away
no matter how horrid and certainly not ever
how beautiful.

When in motion I hungered for stability, instead
I stood between the cars of the train.
I learned that stability is not a thing of stasis between us
it is the swaying of these old, green trains it is
the hoards of people inside and out.

The train was stopped by a bomb. The bomb left the
train track before us twisted and consuming. I left the train to
look and burned my eyes –
a vision of all things not yet known to me.

Many people were teeming in the ditch below the tracks.
Mark was horrified at their confusion and looked away.
I saw their caged and multi-colored parrots as prophecy,
and behind them the burning pyre a calling forth of destiny.
Oh, this is a tilted land.
If I push it, will it disappear?

I drink bottled water and see a train filled with revolutionaries
pass on the parallel track. I am drawn to their grim faces, their
guns, their unbelievable youth. Mark turns his head. He
does not want to know, not then, not any time
that this is the center of the world. This is our future,
these men and guns, the bombing of a train track near
Guaymas is the tale of our tomorrow.

Don’t hide beneath me. I will desire you no longer if you
will not face what is clear. Stability is staring at change
and drawing it to you instead of away. Stability is
these green mountains and the orange heat of this fire.
Stability is the fact of revolution burning in my mind
to remind me that
I am.

Stability is the ancient train carrying us slowly
through Mexico. Stability is not you.

You are not the center of the world.

Stability is the giving of this fruit. Stability is the tasting
of this fruit. Stability is staying
in forever in the center in the moment and
not not not
looking away, no matter how horrid and certainly
not ever how beautiful.

When exhausted I reached for sleep, instead I walked the jungle.
I learned that sleep is not a thing of power between us.
It is the peace in the laughter of bullfrogs in Sufragio. It is a
quiet conversation in Spanish with a kind and handsome man.

The jungle was really a sub-tropical oasis. I found it by accident
when the train was derailed. I bought cigarettes and lemonade
from an eight year old boy. I drank the lemonade made from
sixty lemons –
the scent of all things not known yet to me.

People came out of the hot train and stripped to their underwear.
Mark was embarrassed at their humanity and looked away. I saw
our multi-colored bodies as prophecy, and beneath
the viejas hands
washing my hair the power of God. Oh this is a tilted land.
If I breath it, will it disappear?

I let the vieja wash my hair and cool me with the water. I hear the
singing of men and am fascinating by the closeness
of these people.
Mark turns his head. He does not, cannot know
not then, not any time
that this is the center of the world. This is our future, this dancing
at the side of a derailed train, this human touching, this living in
the moment of the hour of the day by the banana trees and
bullfrogs.

Don’t hide beneath me. I desire you no longer because you do not
face
what is real. Sleep is trust and knowing the rhythm of time. Sleep is
this lush crevasse in a wider, desolate land. Sleep is the rocking of
old women and babies. Sleep is not you.

You are not the center of the world.

Real is the giving of this fruite. Real is the tasting of this fruit.
Real is staying in
the center
the moment
forever
and not ever looking away, not matter how horrid
and certainly, certainly

Not ever how beautiful.


Molly E. Holzschlag, written in 1983, first published in the chapbook “Looking for God in a Bowl of Fruit” Copyright 1995. Independent poetry series featuring socially aware writers. All chapbooks are¬†hand-crafted, use original¬†artwork, Kenaf and recycled papers. From Stained Glass Press, Concord, North Carolina, USA.

One Reply to “Journey To Sinaloa”

  1. Hi Molly,

    This is an interesting site. Thank you for sharing about you experiences and that of your late husband Ray. My business partner, Neil Mahoney, served ten years in the Navy Seals before being discharged for a heart condition. I have been in recovery from Alcohol Use Disorder since 2005. Together, we created Glauser Life Sciences, which seeks to treat the underlying causes of PTSD and Alcohol Use Disorder. These two conditions seem to be linked on a neurotransmitter level. Over several years, we have built an impressive research team from Leaders in PTSD and Alcohol Use Disorder. The team consists of Nicholas Gilpin, Ph.D. (LSU), Todd Thiele, Ph.D. (UNC), Margret Baker, Ph.D. (Johnson & Johnson), Daryl Davies, Ph.D. (USC), Jing Liang, Ph.D. (USC) and David Kipper M.D. (UCLA). Our research is primarily based around the potential of Neuropeptide Y and The inhibition of a particular enzyme. We are convinced that these two brain chemicals play a major role in both indications. During our drug development work, we created an alternative nutraceutical treatment that has great potential for PTSD and AUD. The soon to be released product is called Vinumix. As you can imagine, it doesn’t quite roll of the tongue. From my experience, both PTSD and AUD sufferers are looking for relief. Another word for relief is mollify. Personally, I think the name Molly, would be ideal for our product. I would be very interested in discussing the purchase of your domain name for this purpose- if you think it is suitable. I would be Barry happy to discuss this with you. Please let me know.
    Warms regards,
    Christopher Adams
    CEO
    Glauser Life Sciences
    (213) 309-3778

Comments are closed.