NYU Black Renaissance Noire Volume 18 Issue 3 - Fall 2018 - Page 74

Las Vegas Dondo Esta Mi Madre Tick-tock. Fire-in-the-hole. Pop-Pop. Honky-Tonk. Dancers enflamed. Pop- Pop-Pop. What was he singing? Did you hear that? From Sun-City to Sin- City. From meticulous to chaos. Atop the heap. Dissection & dispersal. Pop-Pop. Pop-Pop. Runaway train. Fissure. Tell me why. Fracture. He covered her body. Without mercy. Massive explosion. A nice guy. High Roller. High flyer. Heaven sent? Whose to say? 500 rounds per minute. Bee- sting. Blood-Oath. Bound to die. The band played on. & then All-Hell. & Oh. Hell. Mom & Dad. Baby too. Run. Run. Run. In extreme circumstances . . . Pop-Pop-Pop-Pop. 22000. Hard to miss. Fish-in-the-barrel / bodies-in- bedlam. Lay my body down. We’re here to sing. Bullets & beer. Barely alive. Sirens in the night. Not quite Gomorrah. Not quite god’s house. Up Up & away. From the 32nd floor to the River Styx. “Save my baby boy”. What a man will do. Can do. Has done. The air is forever haunted. His room is now closed. Where there was wailing in the night. Silence . . . 57 dead. Over 500 wounded. Viet Nam? No / Syria? No / Iraq? No / Las Vegas, usa . . . A child weeps & her cries reverberate throughout the dingy warehouses, makeshift barracks & swarming extraction camps, it October 1, 2017 ricochets across the desolate plains of west Texas, & southern California & southern Arizona & the mesas of New Mexico. A child weeps & his tears threaten to drown the tongue-tied Christians, Jews & Muslims, they dampen dinner tables in Portland Maine & Poughkeepsie, New York & St. Louis, Missouri & across the Rockies & across the sea to Honolulu. Children weep & parents weep & a once-proud people cringes in the wake of what it has allowed & what it has wrought & what it is to be dishonored. Between bouts of fear & trembling these kids are heard to ask Donde Esta Mi Madre — Donde Esta Mi Padre — Donde Estoy? Where Am I? rings off-key like a cracked bell — like a symbolic “liberty” bell, cracked but still resonant, reminiscent of what has been lost but might still be.