Without Extreme Faith

 

Without Extreme Faith
by Molina Speaks

     Inspired by the words of Junot Diaz
     Americas Latino Festival, Denver 2013
 

“This is no keynote, just an artist”
taking shots—
shots at those calling 
shots 
fired
shots 
at the stories
we all tell
to deniers
within. 

There is a fire burning in the ghettos of time
nobody sees their faces anymore—
the poor
disappeared from Public Space
space disappeared
from public life
there is no public 
in the network republic 
of nanosecond time.  

Coming of age in the 80s
brought up on punk and hip-hop
they thought 
the 90s would be like the 60s
then
the zero zero decade was to be the 70s
so is this the 80s again
obama, reagan? 

Trillions of dollars spent
on de-motivation 
minds bent only to the market
youth speak fluent dystopia 
without Rage
one cannot
be an artist 
without extreme faith. 

Education fails kids
as politicians fail civics fail cities
and passionate teachers
teach the physics of civics
to youth 
who intrinsically know
there is no longer such a thing.

“The world will have a hard conversation 
with you
whether you like it
or not,”
progressives rot
without alternative pathways:

“The white bankers know 
they need diversity training
while the cultural radicals
refuse to acknowledge
systems they recreated.”  

“The only way to survive”
is to gather resources
to care for our bodies
to speak our stories
to see marathons
not fuses 
and brave steps forward
in simple solutions:

“A ten year moratorium
on men’s leadership roles”
why not?  Because

a 3000 year old civilization
could travel forward
to see us doing 
what they were doing
what we are doing—
a calendar society
owning people
counting nature
resource by resource 
creating artifacts
of repetition 
repeating
precipice.

Another civilizational moment
is possible
beyond demonstrations
within imagination.

Disrupt the networks.
Break the class divisions.  Whenever possible
forgive yourself and have patience.

You cannot be an artist 
without extreme faith.

They Call It Inspiration

Ideas die slowly, like stars
I can feel them washing
away like bridges.
New dreams populate hemispheres
unseen.

This breath, wild smoke
circling our minds like fire,
evaporating sweat
from conscious thoughts
that stick
like wooden proofs.

Is truth ever defined?

Illusive
like laughter
tumbling Eifel towers,
we watch the waves and intertwine
madness with happiness,
running from normality
like disease, roaming the hills
until time
falls out the clock.

I am awake
and inspired.

 

Autumn Sun

Summertime one mile high
city, red bricks tell the history.
Heat strokes begin to fade
and we bid her farewell,
as yellow school busses cast 7PM shadows
on the wide eyez of the winged.
They began to believe they ran everything
under longer dayz,
wearing their youth on their brows
running from time,
running from each other at play.
Loz vocez de los inmigrantes spilling out
into the streetz,
alongside the thick thump of el loco’s bass
cruizing by helado carts and lemonade stands
watching the streets signs change,
gentrified.
Star signs shifting abovehead, dancing with sliver moons
under grass blankets,
below Scorpio,
above doubts.
Even the grown folks, we thought we could do anything
like mountain streams running
and running, running like lil Carlos running from Jalene,
like lil Chris running from Esperanza,
running up and down the sizzling streets,
el jefe grilling carne asada,
mama boiling greens from the community farm,
Joslyn juicing fresh beets and carrots 
at the pop-up market on Welton Street,
summer setting on the North Side, South Denver,
West Side, East Side, Park Hill,
Montbello, out to Aurora
where suburbs are becoming inner-city,
schools closing and reopening under new names.
There were welcome back barbeques por las familias.
Everything changing, remembering how the hood felt so good
under the banner of Summertime―
fall winter spring we daydream
summer,
chanting down the autumn sun.

 

~ a poem by Molina Speaks

About The Artist Lens

The Artist Lens blog experience is curated by Molina Speaks, dedicated to Poetry, Image, Muse, Open Letters, Arts Education and Profiles of artists and their work.  If the digital age is to be all encompassing, let it be artful.

Molina Speaks is a writer, poet, hip-hop artist, and event producer. Molina is the Performance Director and a Lead Instructor for Youth On Record. He is a TedX fellow and has been an Artist In Residence with the National Hispanic Heritage Center, Mizel Museum, Journey Through Our Heritage and Noel Community Arts School. He has worked on National Endowment for the Arts projects and has accepted invitations to speak and perform and dozens of universities, including Columbia University, University of California at Davis, UT Austin, CU Boulder, and the University of New Mexico. Molina Speaks has taught master artist classes at Boston Arts Academy and Colorado Academy. He has collaborated with the Denver Spirituals Project and was recognized as a keynote poet for 2013 Lalo Delgado Poetry Festival. Molina is the music supervisor for the documentary film Papers. He is a member of the Cafe Cultura artist collective. Molina has released over a dozen poetic and musical works, which have been recognized and critically acclaimed by the Denver Post, 5280 Magazine, Westword, Colorado Music Buzz and other publications.

For more information about the Artist visit www.MolinaSpeaks.com.

Email contact: molina@molinaspeaks.com