Cipota under the Moon: People of Fire - People of Fire

Cipota under the Moon: People of Fire - People of Fire

Cipota under the Moon: People of Fire - People of Fire

The news from El Salvador these past couple of weeks have revolved around volcano eruptions and the upcoming presidential election. And though dissimilar in their nature, upon closer inspection, they reveal a connection - even if the connection is a poetic one.

Chaparrastique is the volcano in San Miguel that spewed gas and ashes this past December. 1,653 individuals were evacuated from the area around the volcano as a preventive measure in case a harsher eruption followed. President Mauricio Funes asked that the event not be used as a fodder election and instead focused on protecting the residents that could be affected by the volcano's eruptions.

The upcoming elections was the main topic of a sponsored talk by Seattle CISPES and given by Francisca Iraheta Romero, a principal school in El Salvador, and a member of ANDES, the Salvadoran Teacher's Union. She spoke eloquently and with great warmth about the importance of US neutrality in upcoming elections. The people of El Salvador, she argued, need to decide on their own who their next president will be.

According El Salvador's University Institute for Public Opinion, the election is very close. Salvador Sanchez Ceren, a former teacher and the FMLN candidate leads with 38.4 percentage points while the ARENA candidate, Norman Quijano, trails with 33.4 percent. The last presidential election (2009) was a watershed moment in Salvadoran history. It was the first time that a fair election was held and the voice of the honored people.

This election, if held without outside interventions, will offer a chance to ignite a new course, to dial a new cycle in our history. Maybe then the color of Peace will spill over our small land.

Claribel Joy in her poem, Flowers of the Volcano, eloquently brings together our volcanoes and the turbulence of our political struggles. I copy it here in the hope that a new cycle will soon begin.

In my country of memory


my country of myth

day by day invention

fourteen volcanoes of foliage and stone

where strange clouds stop

and sometimes

Who says that my country was green?

/ p>

is more violent:

the Izalco that roars

demanding more lives

the eternal chacmol

the blood

and gray orphans

and the volcan drooling

all that incandescent lava

p> and the thousand faces betrayed

and children watching

to tell the story.

We did not have a kingdom

one by one fell

throughout America

p> in the palaces in the streets

in the woods

and plundered the temple

and the blood.

The priest fled

in the middle of the night

called his faithful

and opened the chest as a warrior

to offer the Chac

Chico en el gimnasio con un pants gris
Cipota under the Moon: People of Fire - People of Fire

his smoking heart.

No one believes in Izalco

that Tlaloc is dead. >

From the sunken terrace

you will dominate the volcano of San Salvador

you go up the flanks

two-story mansions

protected by walls

four meters high

You climb up bars and gardens

with roses from England

and araucarias dwarfs <

People living in the village grow their flowers and send their children to sell them.

The cycle is approaching

flowers cuscatlecas

get along with the ash

grow big and strong

the volcano children go down

/ p>

With their bouquets

As roots go down

is approaching the cycle

those who live in houses of two pines

protected from robbery by the walls

they see that red wave

and drown in whiskey their fear

only poor children

with volcanic flowers

but the wave grows


Because Tlaloc is not dead.

Taken from This Is, Concultura, San Salvador, 2004

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