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Baby Blessings February 15, 2010

Thank you Virgen de Guadalupe for listening to my prayers.  It has been six years now since I knelt before my altar asking for this blessing.  I had given up hope and had come to terms with the fact of possibly never being able to have children.  As the years passed by, the longing diminished.

I turned 30 years old on December 21, 1979 – the winter solstice – the longest night of the year.

It was around this time that I feel I conceived the baby I now carry inside my womb.

Today is Valentine’s Day and today marks my 10th week of pregnancy.

I am blessed!  The father of this child is blessed.  God has been merciful.  The Virgen de Guadalupe / Tonantzin has been listening.  Yemaya has been waiting to release her waters.  Oshun has been preparing her rivers to receive this new life. This baby has chosen to travel down from the stars to plant itself in me.  My feet firmly planted, I welcome this baby.  I cherish every moment, even though I have been throwing up everyday!  This is a blessing from the Creator!  I pray that I have a smooth pregnancy and that I deliver a healthy, beautiful baby!

My due date is September 11th / 12th.  I find it interesting that the due date might be the anniversary of the attacks in New York.  Maybe it’s a sign that my baby is a warrior for his/her people and is a symbol of new life in a time when the world is losing so many lives daily all in the name of greed, war, hatred, and exploitation.  This baby represents dreams, hopes, the start of a new chapter, my growing family!  Even though there is so much not to look forward to in this world…we’re still at war, the economy is still in terrible shape, our resources are depleting, our food, water, air, and environment contaminated, our forests disappearing, our oceans polluted….This baby is resistance to the negativity.  The baby vibrates energy through my body and gives the planet new life and new hope for a better tomorrow.  I will do my part in helping my baby grow to be responsible, to listen to the wise teachings of the elders, to respect our Mother Earth, to give Love to all of humanity, to think and act with freedom and justice and LOVE!

 

Speaking at the Gender and Sexuality Center at UT October 20, 2009

I was asked to speak about my life as a young women activist celebrating the National Young Women’s Day of Action!

GSC to Host Celebration of National Young Women¹s Day of Action

EVENT:

The Gender and Sexuality Center at the University of Texas presents speaker

Erika González, co-director of People Organized in Defense of Earth and Her

Resources (PODER)

WHEN: Oct. 21, 6 p.m.

WHERE:

Santa Rita Room, Texas Union

DETAILS:

As co-director of PODER, Erika González, coordinates all youth-related activities and is co-coordinator of PODER¹s Nahui Ollin Healthy Communities project and other projects around transportation and juvenile justice. PODER

works to reorganize environmental issues as social and economic justice issues and empower communities through education, advocacy, and action. The group also increases the participation of communities of color in corporate

and government decision making.

González is a board member of the Highlander Research and Education Center and is a core group member of the Southwest Network for Environmental and Economic Justice¹s Youth Leadership Development Campaign. She also teaches theatre at an elementary afterschool program and co-facilitates poetry workshops at Johnston High School through Red Salmon Arts, Save Our Youth

Program (SOY). She has a B.A. in Elementary Education and a minor in Psychology from St. Edward¹s University through the College Assistance Migrant Program and is also a poet and a flautist.

EVENT SPONSORS:

The Gender and Sexuality Center, a unit of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at UT Austin, provides safe spaces for all members of the UT Austin community to explore, organize, and promote learning around issues of gender and sexuality. The center also facilitates a greater responsiveness to the needs of women and the LGBTQ communities through

education, outreach and advocacy.

Support for event also received from the Center for Women and Gender Studies, Multicultural Information Center, and the Warfield Center for African and African American Studies.

eg-gsc

 

Haiku and a Song – Mercedes Sosa – Gracias a la Vida October 6, 2009

Filed under: Haiku and a Song — texicana @ 10:15 pm

Mercedes  passed away on October 4, 2009.  She was a famous Argentinan folk singer who was internationally acclaimed as the “voice of the voiceless ones” whose criticism of South America’s military regimes led to her admiration by many.  Here I share my favorite song she sang, “Gracias a la Vida,” which means “Thanks to Life.” RIP Mercedes Sosa and thank you for many years of wonderful music!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DPLUSH9xwzA

Cantar es vivir.
Da gracias a la vida.
Canta tu verdad.

 

East Austin Barrio Tour September 28, 2009

Filed under: Events — texicana @ 1:23 am
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P1010603 P1010626

P1010628

P1010635 P1010636

P1010643

P1010642

 

Susana Almanza on the importance of Alma de Mujer September 19, 2009

Here is the latest video from a series I started called, “True Stories from Texas Women.”

Susana Almanza, Co-Director of PODER,  talks about the importance of Alma de Mujer Center for Social for Justice Change.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZkfPJT6pk8

 

Ancestors, Pray Us Back into this World September 16, 2009

Filed under: PODER,Poetry — texicana @ 7:35 pm
Tags: , , , ,

April 22, 2004

Earth Day and PODER’s 13th Anniversary

 

Ancestors, Pray us Back into this World

 

Ancestors!

Pray us back into this world.

 

Hear our cries by grandmother trees

planted alone in the desert

where our toes wither

through cracked sand and cactus thorns.

                                                                                   

Let energy change day to night with droughts and

as water rebuilds – destroys

                               balances

this Earth Mother

with offerings of blessed corn

within spirals of smoke-filled rivers

carrying Indiobeatcurrents

splashing drumbeats against rocks…..

 

-Listen-

 

Our water carries history

repeating – repeating – repeating

in the desert of our minds –

thirsting for the TRUTH within visions of

raindrops in the horizon……

PODER is born……………..

after the thunderstorm……..

seeds sprout……………….

Xinachtli gives birth to……

RESISTENCIA

 

Misty residue heals clouds of electromagnetic smog

That turn brown faces pale with foreign diseases.

                        Another Blanket.

                        Another Cover-Up.

                             Another Lie.

           Cocolitzli appears once more.

           

 

 

 

Ancestors!

Pray us back into this world.

 

Create a healing circle for the

sick —–minded.

 

Sprinkle Yerbabuena

over hungry mouths

craving blood.

 

Let the sun drench the desert

and the moon heal our barrios

as we light           FiRe

                              in     

                        Ceremony

                         Rejoince

                            In

                           Song

                              &

                           Dance

 

Y aunque Coatlique llore,

She still dances with fire as her halo

And a serpent as her shall.

 

Coatlique baila canciones del pueblo.

Coatlique llora lagrimas de fuego.

Coatlique reza poemas de la verdad.

Coatlique empluma los desplumados de la ciudad.

 

She knows both sides of the Rio Bravo.

                Says

“Look inside its waters and see your

            reflection.

Trace your ancestor’s

                Face.

        Pray for our

               Water.

‘date una limpieza of the soul

and don’t forget to water the desert

              of your

             TRUTH.

 

Women DO Riot

Filed under: Poetry — texicana @ 3:18 pm

Feliz 16 de Septiembre!

Women DO Riot
by Erika Gonzalez………in response to Ana Castillo’s poem “Women Don’t Riot” – 1998

Women do riot, in maquilas in Malaysia, Mexico, and even Korea,
 they riot in sweatshops in New York and in El Paso

in San Anto Levi’s factories and in East Austin gentrified streets.

Women do revolt
at street light protests – hip hugging children, and while delivering new life –
By the hundreds and thousands, women change
policies into new emancipations
even when scalded by racist practices.
Women do riot in restaurants where they clean and clean
and clean their
plates empty, only to find them full of their own reflection

cleaning cleaning and cleaning their hands raw

Women do run rampant through the streets in search of justice

even when the running must be turned into indigenous dance,

or a silent walk through the park.

In college those who’ve thought it out 

find out they haven’t thought at all until

they remember grandmother’s words of wisdom and ditch what the professor said

about woman feminism.

 

In the streets, women organize
in crucial times, carry signs,
and are not dragged away – they have visions

that passing one more petition might change people’s greedy ways.

Sometimes women organizing may be called uncivilized

by those who see civilization of the darker shades of souls

as dingy, savage, rebelliousness – but

Women are equipped with knowledge passed down

through the generations

speaking unofficial languages of

societal hatred turned inward and

spiritual courage turned outward when we say enough is enough.

Ya Basta!

 

We women
don’t need to rise up in arms even with our men.
We storm through cities,

with strategic alliances
take over the press, make a unified statement,

not just with our sisters, but also with our brothers and

children and our eternal children’s children.

We may not always
march arm in arm
by the same tongue,
same God, same abandonment, and the
same broken heart,

but the stillness is what makes the heart beat

to the same rhythm
not for one woman or every woman,
but for the sake of us all.

I want to say to those who say women do not riot,

“You obviously have not met my mother.  Or the abuelita

down the street whose property taxes sky rocketed after

her rich neighbor moved in, or the woman who has

to clean bloody noses from her 10 year old’s nose, or to the wife

of a man who is dying of cancer, or the young girl who has

asthma living next to an environmentally hazardous power plant.”

 

And maybe yes, women do not riot, we organize

not in exclusion of the “women only club”

but in respect that

there is a balance between a male and female energy.

The riot is the struggle that tries to bring this balance to nature

not in arms

but in strength

of mind and spirit, words of wisdom

and recogniton that there is still work to be done –

Today it is us.  Tomorrow who?