How to love New Mexico again…with the passion I felt for this place the first years I lived here. Sometimes it’s easy. Yesterday morning for example. Steven and I walked from the river crossing above Rio Bravo south to Rio Bravo and back. Five and one-half miles. Started just before 6 am and winding up at Modelos for a burrito and pineapple Fanta breakfast. Perfect. The bike path going down, right along the river returning. I loved New Mexico and my river and trees and kid and burrito and life.
I looked for some poems about the Rio Grande. Here’s a nice one.
el rio grande
The Rio grande flows from the continental divide like a golden thread, taking the loneliness out of the Colorado mountains. The eyes of dead apache warriors express their sorrow with silent renegade war cries, as the Rio grande meanders through New Mexico.
Tooh-ba-aadi is an ancient Navajo word for a south flowing river. It flows through Tejas like a carancahua red cloth, it cuts through chihuahuas, coahuila, Nuevo Leon and tamaulipas like an Anasazi arrowhead.
The Rio grande is an ancient river that was flowing before all things were given names and the universe had a song in it’s heart. The Rio grande was here before a box of holy relics was bestowed upon an heir by three wise kings. The Rio grande was here before cathedrals, monasteries and chapels were built to cage the gods of man. The Rio grande was here before man enslaved man, a freely flowing river emptying it’s burden into an ocean claimed by no one.
The Rio grande is 1800 miles of blood, sweat, fear, hate, greed, envy, avarice, mercy and grace. The Rio grande is the bridge to the heart of my people and expresses it’s beauty everyday with its brown muddy waters.
And I remember you rio grande, when your strong undercurrent pulled me into your embrace. I remember you rio grande when my cousin drowned at your shore. I remember you rio grande and all the people who call you freedom, and I will remember you every time I close my eyes, clench my fist and raise it high into the air as I pray and mourn for my people.