Scene from the Movie GIANT – A poem By Tino Villanueva Part 4

by: Chuy Ramirez
Posted: May 29, 2021

IV

 

 

The Trailing Consequence: A Triptych

 

                                                                    I

Journey Home

 

The picture show, three-and-a-half hours of it,

Was over;

the credits, so many

ascended into immortality.

The fiery art of film

had sent my head buzzing—:

I rose in penumbra, vexed at the unwinding

course of truth and was now lost in my steps,

eyes struggling with unnatural chasms of light.

I walked home for a long time

and in my mind    I regarded

the tall screen bearing down on me—

I was drifting away

from its outburst, yet its measure of violence,

like an indictment from Sarge,

did not fade.

There was no wind.

No firm star came out

to acquire me in safety.

The world seemed enormous around me

and as I moved in it

I felt I could not journey

further than myself.

Minutes passed

and then another

(Once I saw, as in a dream,

that I Had never reached home.)

I crossed the railroad tracks, went past

the lumber yard, the concrete bridge at Purgatory Creek,

and over a second set of tracks—

a weary logic leading me back to where I began

I think I must have made a fist

in desperation, as tough as the years

to my name

and there grew in my mouth

a great shout which never came.

Time and time over: a child at that age

falls short of endowing dumb misery with speech.

 

II

Observer and Observed

 

No one walks with me

(down the dust-bound street

Where I step lightly)

Sullen, slight-young boy.

Each neighbor

in the ease of the afternoon

serenely grown out of something forgetful,

looks through me,

believing life goes on as before

as I pass by.

The trees and the houses among them

see me staring in muteness;

from where they stand—houses, trees,

neighbors—they cannot know

the sudden intake of all breath,

a sigh I myself do not comprehend.

Something weightless

gathers around me, while my body, unpoised

holds its forward momentum

in silence and slow time.

As the afternoon    emptied of meaning

Deepens perceptibly,

the soft-hollowed steps in which I move

are my only cause.

 

 

 

 

 

III

Dusk with Dreaming

The neighborhood, 1956—:

I reached its border

feeling I was nothing

other than my name.

It seems a long time ago

that I stepped into the patio

held off for a moment

before going in for supper

and leaned, instead,

against a pecan tree’s

slender-rooted trunk.

And standing at my point of view,

I felt a nothingness

burning through all thought.

By now the day was fading into twilight,

and I beginning

not to cast a shadow where I had always been,

when I saw,

suddenly, a boy alone

who had to tear to prove he was…

Something from the movie screen had

dropped into life, his small shield of faith

no longer with him.

Dusk was dawning over the tree-tops

when I was called inside

where grace was said, I am sure of it,

for we were always grateful to the sky.

I remember the clock ticking

and my breathing

when finally

my mouth took ethnically again

sustenance in solace.

The rest of me began to dream and my mind

flew off and I became, for that instant:

another boy from another land, in another time,

another time, which is also home.

 

Chuy Ramirez is an attorney practicing law in the Rio Grande Valley since 1983, and dabbles in writing.

Viva Chihuahua! Sustainability in a Desert Landscape

4:00 p.m., MST June 19, Broadcast from the Art and Ecology Laboratory, La Union

The Chihuahuan Desert straddles the border to cover more than 200,000 square miles of terrain across 8 states and is considered to be the most biologically diverse desert in the world as measured by the variety of species and endemic plants. Its relevance and impact to the culture and traditions of its human inhabitants is intertwined with their survival in this distinct landscape. Our program guests include sustainability activist, Kevin Bixby of the Southwest Environmental Center; landscape architect, David Christiani; historian, Anthony Mora, Ph.D. and artists Antonio Castro and Romy Hawkins.

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